Show Your Flag or Be Everyone's Friend?: The Effects of District Magnitude on Vote-Securing Strategies

31 Pages Posted: 13 Apr 2019

See all articles by Kosuke Nakamura

Kosuke Nakamura

Yokohama City University - Graduate School of International Management

Junichiro Wada

Yokohama City University

Date Written: March 22, 2019

Abstract

In this paper, we argue that a difference in district magnitude—the number of seats per district—causes variation in electoral competition. We show that in the Single-Member District with Plurality voting (SMDP) system, voters may cast their ballots using the candidate’s “visual cues”—this is particularly notable when voters cannot rely on party labels. We quantify the candidate’s smile in a replicable form by using automated facial recognition technology.

Using data from local assembly elections in an urban area in Japan, we showed how a candidate’s smile, the proxy of the candidate’s visual, is effective in gathering floating votes in SMDP, but it does not increase the vote share in Multi-Member Districts with Single Non-Transferable Voting (MMDs/SNTV) system.

Keywords: electoral system, district magnitude, visual cue, automated facial recognition technology, Japan

Suggested Citation

Nakamura, Kosuke and Wada, Junichiro, Show Your Flag or Be Everyone's Friend?: The Effects of District Magnitude on Vote-Securing Strategies (March 22, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3345557 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3345557

Kosuke Nakamura (Contact Author)

Yokohama City University - Graduate School of International Management

22-2, Seto,
Kanazawa
Yokohama, Kanagawa 2360027
Japan

Junichiro Wada

Yokohama City University ( email )

22-2 Seto
Kanazawa
Yokohama, Kanagawa 236-0027
Japan
+81-45-787-2311 (Phone)

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
29
Abstract Views
232
PlumX Metrics