Abstract

https://ssrn.com/abstract=2887752
 


 



Do Anti-Poverty Programs Sway Voters? Experimental Evidence from Uganda


Christopher Blattman


University of Chicago, Harris School of Public Policy; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Mathilde Emeriau


Stanford University

Nathan Fiala


University of Connecticut - Department of Agricultural Economics

December 19, 2016


Abstract:     
A Ugandan government program allowed groups of young people to submit proposals to start skilled enterprises. Among 535 eligible proposals, the government randomly selected 265 to receive grants of nearly $400 per person. Blattman et al. (2014) showed that, after four years, the program raised employment by 17% and earnings 38%. This paper shows that, rather than rewarding the government in elections, beneficiaries increased opposition party membership, campaigning, and voting. Higher incomes are associated with opposition support, and we hypothesize that financial independence frees the poor to express political preferences publicly, being less reliant on patronage and other political transfers.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 58

Keywords: Political behavior, voting, partisanship, employment, labor market programs, poverty, cash transfers, Uganda, field experiment

JEL Classification: P16, D72, F35


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Date posted: December 20, 2016  

Suggested Citation

Blattman, Christopher and Emeriau, Mathilde and Fiala, Nathan, Do Anti-Poverty Programs Sway Voters? Experimental Evidence from Uganda (December 19, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2887752 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2887752

Contact Information

Christopher Blattman (Contact Author)
University of Chicago, Harris School of Public Policy ( email )
1101 East 58th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
Mathilde Emeriau
Stanford University ( email )
Stanford, CA 94305
United States
Nathan Fiala
University of Connecticut - Department of Agricultural Economics ( email )
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