IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/iza/izadps/dp9994.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Is Partisan Alignment Electorally Rewarding? Evidence from Village Council Elections in India

Author

Listed:
  • Dey, Subhasish

    (University of Manchester)

  • Sen, Kunal

    (University of Manchester)

Abstract

Do ruling parties positively discriminate in favour of their own constituencies in allocating public resources? If they do, do they gain electorally in engaging in such a practice? This paper tests whether partisan alignment exists in the allocation of funds for India's largest social protection programme, the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) in the state of West Bengal in India, and whether incumbent local governments (village councils) gain electorally in the practice of partisan alignment. Using a quasi-experimental research design, we find that the village council level ruling-party spends significantly more in its own party constituencies as compared to opponent constituencies. We also find strong evidence of electoral rewards in the practice of partisan alignment. However, we find that the results differ between the two main ruling political parties at the village council level in the state.

Suggested Citation

  • Dey, Subhasish & Sen, Kunal, 2016. "Is Partisan Alignment Electorally Rewarding? Evidence from Village Council Elections in India," IZA Discussion Papers 9994, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp9994
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp9994.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Frederico Finan & Laura Schechter, 2012. "Vote‐Buying and Reciprocity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 80(2), pages 863-881, March.
    2. Kitschelt, Herbert, 1992. "Political Regime Change: Structure and Process-Driven Explanations?," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 86(4), pages 1028-1034, December.
    3. Assar Lindbeck & Jörgen Weibull, 1987. "Balanced-budget redistribution as the outcome of political competition," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 52(3), pages 273-297, January.
    4. Solé-Ollé, Albert & Sorribas-Navarro, Pilar, 2008. "The effects of partisan alignment on the allocation of intergovernmental transfers. Differences-in-differences estimates for Spain," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(12), pages 2302-2319, December.
    5. Besley, Timothy & Coate, Stephen, 1992. "Workfare versus Welfare Incentive Arguments for Work Requirements in Poverty-Alleviation Programs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(1), pages 249-261, March.
    6. Arulampalam, Wiji & Dasgupta, Sugato & Dhillon, Amrita & Dutta, Bhaskar, 2009. "Electoral goals and center-state transfers: A theoretical model and empirical evidence from India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(1), pages 103-119, January.
    7. Dahlberg, Matz & Johansson, Eva, 2002. "On the Vote-Purchasing Behavior of Incumbent Governments," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 96(1), pages 27-40, March.
    8. Bardhan, Pranab & Mookherjee, Dilip, 2006. "Pro-poor targeting and accountability of local governments in West Bengal," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(2), pages 303-327, April.
    9. Nichter, Simeon, 2008. "Vote Buying or Turnout Buying? Machine Politics and the Secret Ballot," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 102(1), pages 19-31, February.
    10. Stephan Litschig & Kevin Morrison, 2010. "Government spending and re-election: Quasi-experimental evidence from Brazilian municipalities," Economics Working Papers 1233, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Jun 2012.
    11. Timothy Besley & Stephen Coate, 1997. "An Economic Model of Representative Democracy," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(1), pages 85-114.
    12. James A. Robinson & Thierry Verdier, 2013. "The Political Economy of Clientelism," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 115(2), pages 260-291, April.
    13. Joshua D. Angrist & Jörn-Steffen Pischke, 2009. "Mostly Harmless Econometrics: An Empiricist's Companion," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 8769, April.
    14. Imbens, Guido W & Angrist, Joshua D, 1994. "Identification and Estimation of Local Average Treatment Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(2), pages 467-475, March.
    15. Imbens, Guido W. & Lemieux, Thomas, 2008. "Regression discontinuity designs: A guide to practice," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 615-635, February.
    16. Vergne, Clémence, 2009. "Democracy, elections and allocation of public expenditures in developing countries," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 63-77, March.
    17. Case, Anne, 2001. "Election goals and income redistribution: Recent evidence from Albania," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(3), pages 405-423, March.
    18. Francesco Caselli & Guy Michaels, 2013. "Do Oil Windfalls Improve Living Standards? Evidence from Brazil," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(1), pages 208-238, January.
    19. Lee, David S. & Card, David, 2008. "Regression discontinuity inference with specification error," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 655-674, February.
    20. Cerda, Rodrigo & Vergara, Rodrigo, 2008. "Government Subsidies and Presidential Election Outcomes: Evidence for a Developing Country," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(11), pages 2470-2488, November.
    21. Sam Asher & Paul Novosad, 2017. "Politics and Local Economic Growth: Evidence from India," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 9(1), pages 229-273, January.
    22. Labonne, Julien, 2013. "The local electoral impacts of conditional cash transfers," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 104(C), pages 73-88.
    23. Navin Kartik & R. Preston McAfee, 2007. "Signaling Character in Electoral Competition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(3), pages 852-870, June.
    24. Pranab Bardhan & Dilip Mookherjee, 2010. "Determinants of Redistributive Politics: An Empirical Analysis of Land Reforms in West Bengal, India," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(4), pages 1572-1600, September.
    25. Banful, Afua Branoah, 2011. "Do formula-based intergovernmental transfer mechanisms eliminate politically motivated targeting? Evidence from Ghana," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(2), pages 380-390, November.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Pranab Bardhan & Sandip Mitra & Dilip Mookherjee & Anusha Nath, 2018. "Resource Transfers to Local Governments: Political Manipulation and Household Responses in West Bengal," Boston University - Department of Economics - The Institute for Economic Development Working Papers Series dp-319, Boston University - Department of Economics.
    2. Savu, A., 2021. "Reverse Political Coattails under a Technocratic Government: New Evidence on the National Electoral Benefits of Local Party Incumbency," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 2121, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    3. Maitra, Pushkar & Mitra, Sandip & Mookherjee, Dilip & Visaria, Sujata, 2020. "Decentralized Targeting of Agricultural Credit Programs: Private versus Political Intermediaries," Discussion paper series HIAS-E-94, Hitotsubashi Institute for Advanced Study, Hitotsubashi University.
    4. Pushkar Maitra & Sandip Mitra & Dilip Mookherjee & Sujata Visaria, 2020. "Decentralized Targeting of Agricultural Credit Programs: Private versus Political Intermediaries," HKUST IEMS Working Paper Series 2020-70, HKUST Institute for Emerging Market Studies, revised Jan 2020.
    5. Dilip Mookherjee & Anusha Nath, 2021. "Clientelistic Politics and Pro-Poor Targeting: Rules versus Discretionary Budgets," Staff Report 624, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Litschig, Stephan, 2012. "Are rules-based government programs shielded from special-interest politics? Evidence from revenue-sharing transfers in Brazil," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(11), pages 1047-1060.
    2. Markus Reischmann, 2016. "Empirische Studien zu Staatsverschuldung und fiskalischen Transferzahlungen," ifo Beiträge zur Wirtschaftsforschung, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, number 63, August.
    3. Gonschorek, Gerrit J. & Schulze, Günther G. & Sjahrir, Bambang Suharnoko, 2018. "To the ones in need or the ones you need? The political economy of central discretionary grants − empirical evidence from Indonesia," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 240-260.
    4. Jean-Francois Maystadt & Muhammad Kabir Salihu, 2015. "National or political cake?," Working Papers 100756558, Lancaster University Management School, Economics Department.
    5. Prummer, Anja, 2020. "Micro-targeting and polarization," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 188(C).
    6. Marta Curto-Grau, 2017. "Voters’ responsiveness to public employment policies," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 170(1), pages 143-169, January.
    7. Kauder, Björn & Potrafke, Niklas & Reischmann, Markus, 2016. "Do politicians reward core supporters? Evidence from a discretionary grant program," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 39-56.
    8. Kauder, Björn & Björn, Kauder & Niklas, Potrafke & Markus, Reischmann, 2016. "Do politicians gratify core supporters? Evidence from a discretionary grant program," VfS Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145509, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    9. Briggs, Ryan C., 2021. "Power to which people? Explaining how electrification targets voters across party rotations in Ghana," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 141(C).
    10. Josip Glaurdić & Vuk Vuković, 2017. "Granting votes: exposing the political bias of intergovernmental grants using the within-between specification for panel data," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 171(1), pages 223-241, April.
    11. Gregor, András, 2020. "Intergovernmental transfers and political competition measured by pivotal probability - Evidence from Hungary," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 62(C).
    12. Savu, A., 2021. "Reverse Political Coattails under a Technocratic Government: New Evidence on the National Electoral Benefits of Local Party Incumbency," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 2121, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    13. Carozzi, Felipe & Repetto, Luca, 2019. "Distributive politics inside the city? The political economy of Spain's Plan E," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 85-106.
    14. Marta Curto-Grau (Universitat de Barcelona) & Albert Sole-Olle (Universitat de Barcelona) & Pilar Sorribas-Navarro(Universitat de Barcelona), 2012. "Partisan targeting of inter-governmental transfers & state interference in local elections: evidence from Spain," Working Papers in Economics 288, Universitat de Barcelona. Espai de Recerca en Economia.
    15. Bracco, Emanuele & Lockwood, Ben & Porcelli, Francesco & Redoano, Michela, 2015. "Intergovernmental grants as signals and the alignment effect: Theory and evidence," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 123(C), pages 78-91.
    16. Sorribas-Navarro, Pilar, 2011. "Bailouts in a fiscal federal system: Evidence from Spain," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 154-170, March.
    17. Oana Borcan, 2016. "The illicit beneficts of local party alignment in national elections," University of East Anglia School of Economics Working Paper Series 2016-10, School of Economics, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK..
    18. Casas, Agustin, 2020. "The electoral benefits of unemployment, clientelism and distributive politics," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 129(C).
    19. Abel Fumey, 2018. "Intergovernmental fiscal transfers and tactical political maneuverings: Evidence from Ghana’s District Assemblies Common Fund," WIDER Working Paper Series 031, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    20. Chau, Nancy H. & Liu, Yanyan & Soundararajan, Vidhya, 2021. "Political activism as a determinant of strategic transfers: Evidence from an indian public works program," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 132(C).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme; partisan alignment feedback effect; fuzzy regression discontinuity design;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • H53 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Welfare Programs
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp9994. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/izaaade.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Holger Hinte (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/izaaade.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.