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Conformism and Turnout

Author

Listed:
  • Massimiliano Landi

    (School of Economics, Singapore Management University)

  • Mauro Sodini

    (Dipartimento di Statistica e Matematica Applicata all'Economia, Universita degli Studi di Pisa)

Abstract

This paper proposes a model of turnout in which citizens have a preference for conformism, which adds to the instrumental preference for the electoral outcome. Under this environment multiple equilibria arise, some that generate a (more realistic) high level of turnout, for a wide rage of parameter values. It is also shown that high levels of turnout are robust to the introduction of asymmetry and heterogeneity in the parameter governing the preference for conformism and with respect to the reference group for conformism. This model suggests that high turnout can only be achieved as the outcome of a particular coordination among citizens and, therefore, introduces a di erent perspective in understanding the citizens' decision to vote, which allows also to account for large shifts in turnout rates that are observed after compulsory laws have been introduced or abolished. Moreover, this set up proposes a theory for the D term used in rational theories of voting to account for high turnout rates.

Suggested Citation

  • Massimiliano Landi & Mauro Sodini, 2010. "Conformism and Turnout," Working Papers 24-2010, Singapore Management University, School of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:siu:wpaper:24-2010
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    File URL: https://mercury.smu.edu.sg/rsrchpubupload/16684/ConfandTurnoutFinal.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. João Amaro de Matos & Pedro Barros, 2004. "Social Norms and the Paradox of Elections’ Turnout," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 121(1), pages 239-255, October.
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    Cited by:

    1. Landi, M. & Sodini, M., 2012. "An evolutionary analysis of turnout with conformist citizens," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 36(10), pages 1431-1447.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Turnout; compulsory voting; Poisson games; coordination games; conformism.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games

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