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Shades of brown and green: Party effects in proportional election systems

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  • Olle Folke

    () (Institut for International Economic Studies)

Abstract

Small parties play an important role in proportional election systems. For example, the emergence and electoral success of environmental and anti-immigration parties have constituted one of the central changes in the political landscape in Europe over the last three decades. But we do not know if this has actually had any implications for policy, since no methods exist for credibly estimating the effect of legislative representation in proportional election systems. Because party representation is not randomly assigned, both observable and unobservable factors influence policy outcomes as well as party representation. Using a part of the legislative seat allocation that is as good as random, I estimate the causal effect of party representation on immigration policy, environmental policy and tax policy in Swedish municipalities. The results show that party representation has a large effect on the first two policies, but not on the tax policy.

Suggested Citation

  • Olle Folke, 2010. "Shades of brown and green: Party effects in proportional election systems," Working Papers 2010/25, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
  • Handle: RePEc:ieb:wpaper:2010/7/doc2010-25
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Per Pettersson-Lidbom, 2008. "Do Parties Matter for Economic Outcomes? A Regression-Discontinuity Approach," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 6(5), pages 1037-1056, September.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Party effects; proportional representation; regression discontinuity design;

    JEL classification:

    • H5 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies
    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations

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