Modeling the Outcomes of Vote-Casting in Actual Elections

41 Pages Posted: 21 Jun 2010 Last revised: 18 Aug 2011

See all articles by T. Nicolaus Tideman

T. Nicolaus Tideman

Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University - Department of Economics

Florenz Plassmann

SUNY at Binghamton, Department of Economics

Date Written: January 18, 2011

Abstract

We use two sets of ranking data, one from actual elections and the other from surveys of voters, to examine whether there is a discernable pattern in the outcomes of three-candidate elections. We evaluate twelve statistical models that make different assumptions about such a pattern, and find that a spatial model describes the observations in both data sets much more accurately than any of the other eleven models. Several of the models that we examine have been used in the past to analyze the frequencies of voting phenomena. However, our finding implies that any conclusions about the frequencies of voting phenomena in actual elections are suspect if they are reached on the basis of any of the eleven models that we examine besides the spatial model.

Keywords: spatial model of voting, Borda, Condorcet, impartial anonymous culture

JEL Classification: C4, D72

Suggested Citation

Tideman, T. Nicolaus and Plassmann, Florenz, Modeling the Outcomes of Vote-Casting in Actual Elections (January 18, 2011). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1627787 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1627787

T. Nicolaus Tideman

Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University - Department of Economics ( email )

3021 Pamplin Hall
Blacksburg, VA 24061
United States

Florenz Plassmann (Contact Author)

SUNY at Binghamton, Department of Economics ( email )

Binghamton, NY 13902-6000
United States
607-777-4304 (Phone)

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