Learning to Throw Out the Rascals: Electoral Agency in the Lab

36 Pages Posted: 11 Jun 2011

See all articles by Leif Helland

Leif Helland

BI Norwegian Business School - Department of Economics

Lars C. Monkerud

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: November 2009

Abstract

Models of electoral agency address the amount of discipline and selection that can be achieved by voters in elections. The models are demanding in terms of individual belief-formation and consistency of behavior. We investigate a baseline model of electoral agency in a controlled laboratory environment. This baseline model, although simple, form the core of more complex electoral agency models. Our design seeks to limit the behavioral impact of social preferences. We find little support for the baseline model in our data. However, simple (non-rational) learning rules explain behavioral patterns well. Simulations indicate that non-rational learning pushes behavior most forcefully towards equilibrium in situations that are favorable to bayesian updating.

Keywords: Laboratory experiment, Learning, Electoral Agency

JEL Classification: D72, D83

Suggested Citation

Helland, Leif and Monkerud, Lars C., Learning to Throw Out the Rascals: Electoral Agency in the Lab (November 2009). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1860883 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1860883

Leif Helland (Contact Author)

BI Norwegian Business School - Department of Economics ( email )

Nydalsveien 37
Oslo, 0484
Norway

Lars C. Monkerud

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

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