Democratic Participation and Government Expenditure: The Consequences of Women's Suffrage

IEW Working Paper No. 210

35 Pages Posted: 5 Nov 2004

See all articles by Alois Stutzer

Alois Stutzer

University of Basel - Faculty of Business and Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Lukas Kienast

University of Zurich - Department of Economics

Date Written: October 2004

Abstract

In this paper, we study the effect of women's suffrage on government expenditure in Swiss cantons. Based on the institutionally induced change in the electorate, we analyse the relationship between politically represented preferences and the outcome of the political process. Women, on average, still belong to lower income classes than men. According to theories on government size, women's participation is therefore expected to increase demand for public services. In contrast to this hypothesis, we estimate a negative effect of women's suffrage on the development of total expenditure. Thereby, it is possible to control for general trends in the economy, as well as in society because suffrage was introduced in different years in Swiss cantons. We discuss possible explanations like fiscally conservative women or the interaction of women's suffrage and direct democratic institutions.

Note: The Downloadable document is in German.

JEL Classification: D72, H23, H50

Suggested Citation

Stutzer, Alois and Kienast, Lukas, Democratic Participation and Government Expenditure: The Consequences of Women's Suffrage (October 2004). IEW Working Paper No. 210. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=614341 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.614341

Alois Stutzer (Contact Author)

University of Basel - Faculty of Business and Economics ( email )

Peter Merian-Weg 6
4002 Basel
Switzerland
0041 61 267 3361 (Phone)
0041 61 267 3340 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.wwz.unibas.ch/stutzer/

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Lukas Kienast

University of Zurich - Department of Economics

Zuerich, 8006
Switzerland

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