Redistributive Policy and Redistribution Preferences: The Effects of Moscow Redevelopment Program
52 Pages Posted: 30 Aug 2022
Date Written: August 9, 2022
How does inclusion in social policy programs strengthen individuals' support for subsequent redistribution? Existing work often conflates the effects of policy inclusion with the concrete material benefits they provide and broader contextual factors, such as economic shocks and long-running ideological education. Consequently, little is known about whether and how inclusion in specific government programs leads to spill overs in support for future social policy programs and redistribution generally. In this paper, we propose that programs can shape subsequent attitudes if they are carried out in a way that builds institutional trust. We study a unique dataset of 1300 Moscow residents in order to estimate the effect of participating in a government-sponsored redevelopment program on preferences for redistributive social policy. Our design exploits unique features of the program designed to foster institutional trust by engaging citizens in the policy design process and educating them on its implementation. We find that there is a positive effect: individuals in buildings slated for redevelopment are more likely to agree that government should reduce income differences between rich and poor, provide for unemployed, and provide housing to everyone who needs it. We show that the primary channel through which this effect operates is increased trust in the government. Our results shed light on how programs can be used strategically to promote a redistributive agenda. They also suggest a pathway for the co-persistence of redistribution preferences and redistributive state policies.
Keywords: Redistribution preferences, consultation, housing policy
JEL Classification: D01, H24, H55, O18
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation