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Determinants of Direct Democracy

  • Nadia Fiorino
  • Roberto Ricciuti

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    This paper investigates on the demographic, economic, political and cultural determinants of direct democracy in 87 countries using an index of direct democracy. The test is interesting since there are important variations across these countries in the referendum and initiative use. We apply a number of estimation techniques. We find that per capita income, education and a larger share of Catholic population are positive determinants, whereas ethnic fractionalization is depending on the estimation technique. Political rights and stability also work as prerequisites to direct democracy. Direct democracy seems independent from the institutional structure.

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    File URL: http://servizi.sme.unito.it/icer_repec/RePEc/icr/wp2007/ICERwp23-07.pdf
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    Paper provided by ICER - International Centre for Economic Research in its series ICER Working Papers with number 23-2007.

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    Length: pages
    Date of creation: Mar 2007
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:icr:wpicer:23-2007
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    1. Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1998. "The Quality of Government," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1847, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
    2. Feld, Lars P & Savioz, Marcel R, 1997. "Direct Democracy Matters for Economic Performance: An Empirical Investigation," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(4), pages 507-38.
    3. Paolo Mauro, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712.
    4. Torsten Persson & Guido Tabellini, 2006. "Democracy and Development: The Devil in the Details," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000001139, UCLA Department of Economics.
    5. Blomberg, S. Brock & Hess, Gregory D. & Weerapana, Akila, 2004. "The impact of voter initiatives on economic activity," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 207-226, March.
    6. Feld, Lars P. & Matsusaka, John G., 2003. "Budget referendums and government spending: evidence from Swiss cantons," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(12), pages 2703-2724, December.
    7. Matsusaka, John G & McCarty, Nolan M, 2001. "Political Resource Allocation: Benefits and Costs of Voter Initiatives," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 17(2), pages 413-48, October.
    8. Matsusaka, John G, 1995. "Fiscal Effects of the Voter Initiative: Evidence from the Last 30 Years," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 587-623, June.
    9. John G. Matsusaka, 2005. "Direct Democracy Works," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(2), pages 185-206, Spring.
    10. Glaeser, Edward Ludwig & Ponzetto, Giacomo A. M. & Shleifer, Andrei, 2007. "Why does democracy need education?," Scholarly Articles 27867132, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    11. Frey, Bruno S & Kucher, Marcel & Stutzer, Alois, 2001. "Outcome, Process and Power in Direct Democracy: New Econometric Results," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 107(3-4), pages 271-93, June.
    12. Adam Przeworski & Fernando Limongi, 1993. "Political Regimes and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(3), pages 51-69, Summer.
    13. Barro, Robert J., 1999. "Determinants of Democracy," Scholarly Articles 3451297, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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