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Political Violence and Social Networks: Experimental Evidence from a Nigerian Election

  • Marcel Fafchamps
  • Pedro C. Vicente

Political accountability and participation are taken as key ingredients for development.� In this context voter education and informational campaigns are becoming popular with donors.� We followed a large-scale randomized campaign against electoral violence sponsored by an international NGO during the 2007 Nigerian elections.� Substantial direct effects on perceptions about violence and voting behaviour are reported for this campaign.� This paper is devoted to the assessment of the network effects of this intervention.� Comprehensive measurement of the links between households allows us to estimate reinforcement effects on the treated subjects in campaign locations, and diffusion effects on untreated subjects in campaign locations.� These effects are derived with reference to suitable comparison groups in untreated locations.� We find evidence for both network effects using different estimation techniques.� Namely, we document the importance of kinship and geographical distance in spreading perceptions associated with the campaign.� We do not find clear network effects of behavior.

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Paper provided by University of Oxford, Department of Economics in its series Economics Series Working Papers with number CSAE WPS/2009-14.

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Date of creation: 01 Jul 2009
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Handle: RePEc:oxf:wpaper:csae-wps/2009-14
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