A Simultaneous Analysis of Turnout and Voting Under Proportional Representation: Theory and Experiments

Tinbergen Institute 13-192/I

32 Pages Posted: 6 Dec 2013

See all articles by Aaron Kamm

Aaron Kamm

New York University (NYU) - New York University Abu Dhabi

Arthur J. H. C. Schram

University of Amsterdam - Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB); Tinbergen Institute

Date Written: December 3, 2013

Abstract

In a system of proportional representation, we study the interaction between a voter’s turnout decision and her party choice, and how these relate to party polarization. Quantal response equilibria predict such interaction effects. In particular they predict (i) a Polarization Effect: reduced strategic party choice when voting is voluntary makes voters more likely to vote for extreme parties (conditional on voting at all); (ii) an Extremist Effect: voters supporting extreme parties are most likely to vote; (iii) a Turnout Effect: party polarization increases voter turnout. We provide data from a laboratory experiment that support these theoretical predictions. In addition, we provide supporting empirical evidence from real world elections. Hence, the interaction between turnout and strategic voting that has been neglected in most of the previous literature is shown to be important.

Keywords: Voting behavior, Proportional representation, Political participation, Strategic voting, Experimental Economics

JEL Classification: C92, D72

Suggested Citation

Kamm, Aaron and Schram, Arthur J. H. C., A Simultaneous Analysis of Turnout and Voting Under Proportional Representation: Theory and Experiments (December 3, 2013). Tinbergen Institute 13-192/I, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2363948 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2363948

Aaron Kamm (Contact Author)

New York University (NYU) - New York University Abu Dhabi ( email )

PO Box 129188
Abu Dhabi
United Arab Emirates

HOME PAGE: http://sites.google.com/site/akammhome/

Arthur J. H. C. Schram

University of Amsterdam - Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB) ( email )

Roetersstraat 18
CREED
Amsterdam 1018 WB
Netherlands
+31 (0)20 525 4293 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.fee.uva.nl/creed/PEOPLE/Arthurs.htm

Tinbergen Institute ( email )

Burg. Oudlaan 50
Rotterdam, 3062 PA
Netherlands

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