Information Revelation and Policy Responsiveness in Electoral Authoritarian Regimes

29 Pages Posted: 19 Jul 2010 Last revised: 31 Aug 2010

See all articles by Michael K. Miller

Michael K. Miller

Princeton University; Australian National University (ANU)

Date Written: 2010


Despite widespread scholarly interest in electoral authoritarian regimes, formal modeling has been lacking on the function of authoritarian elections and their influence on policy and regime development. This study introduces a formal mechanism through which controlled elections credibly reveal information on citizen preferences by offering a balance of patronage and policy concessions. To support the theory, the paper presents the first cross-country analysis of policy-setting within electoral authoritarian regimes, finding that falling vote totals for the ruling regime are associated with higher education spending and lower military spending. Finally, the paper offers case-study evidence from Singapore and Egypt.

Keywords: Electoral Authoritarianism, Hybrid Regimes, Signaling

JEL Classification: C72, D82

Suggested Citation

Miller, Michael K., Information Revelation and Policy Responsiveness in Electoral Authoritarian Regimes (2010). APSA 2010 Annual Meeting Paper, Available at SSRN:

Michael K. Miller (Contact Author)

Princeton University ( email )

22 Chambers Street
Princeton, NJ 08544-0708
United States

Australian National University (ANU) ( email )

Canberra, Australian Capital Territory 2601

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