Turnout and Power Sharing

32 Pages Posted: 25 Feb 2014  

Helios Herrera

Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM) - Centro de Investigacion Economica

Massimo Morelli

Bocconi University

Thomas R. Palfrey

California Institute of Technology - Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences

Date Written: February 2014

Abstract

We compare turnout under proportional power‐sharing electoral systems and winner‐take‐all elections. The effect of such institutional differences on turnout depends on the distribution of voter preferences. If the two parties have relatively equal support, turnout is higher in a winner‐take‐all system; the result is reversed when there is a clear underdog. We report findings from a laboratory experiment that was designed and conducted to explore this theoretical hypothesis and several other secondary hypotheses that are also implied by the theoretical model. The results are broadly supportive of the theoretical predictions on comparative turnout, the partial underdog compensation effect and the competition effect.

Suggested Citation

Herrera, Helios and Morelli, Massimo and Palfrey, Thomas R., Turnout and Power Sharing (February 2014). The Economic Journal, Vol. 124, Issue 574, pp. F131-F162, 2014. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2400794 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ecoj.12116

Helios Herrera

Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM) - Centro de Investigacion Economica ( email )

Av. Camino a Santa Teresa #930
Col. Heroes de Padierna
Mexico City, D.F. 10370
Mexico
+52 55 5628 4000 (Phone)
+52 55 5628 4958 (Fax)

Massimo Morelli

Bocconi University ( email )

Via Roentgen 1
Milan, 20136
Italy

Thomas R. Palfrey

California Institute of Technology - Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences ( email )

1200 East California Blvd.
301A Baxter Hall
Pasadena, CA 91125
United States
626-395-4088 (Phone)
626-4432-1726 (Fax)

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