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Get out the (costly) vote: institutional design for greater participation

Gerardi, Dino and McConnell, Margaret A. and Romero, Julian and Yariv, Leeat (2016) Get out the (costly) vote: institutional design for greater participation. Economic Inquiry, 54 (4). pp. 1963-1979. ISSN 0095-2583. doi:10.1111/ecin.12332.

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We examine two commonly discussed institutions inducing turnout: abstention penalties (used in 32 countries) and lotteries rewarding one randomly chosen participant (as proposed on the 2006 Arizona ballot). We analyze a benchmark model in which voters vary in their information quality and participation is costly. We illustrate that both institutions can improve collective outcomes, though lotteries are a more effective instrument asymptotically. Experimentally, we provide strong evidence for selective participation: lab voters participate more when better informed or when institutionally induced. Lotteries fare better than fines, suggesting that they may be a useful alternative to commonly used compulsory voting schemes.

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Additional Information:© 2016 Western Economic Association International. Issue online: 30 August 2016; Version of record online: 20 March 2016; Manuscript Accepted: 5 August 2015; Manuscript Received: 11 May 2015. We are thankful to Tim Feddersen and Navin Kartik for very useful comments. Yariv gratefully acknowledges support from the National Science Foundation (SES 0551014).
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Issue or Number:4
Classification Code:JEL: C92, D72, D02
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20161215-104828958
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Official Citation:Gerardi, D., McConnell, M. A., Romero, J. and Yariv, L. (2016), GET OUT THE (COSTLY) VOTE: INSTITUTIONAL DESIGN FOR GREATER PARTICIPATION. Econ Inq, 54: 1963–1979. doi:10.1111/ecin.12332
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:72845
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:15 Dec 2016 19:42
Last Modified:11 Nov 2021 05:07

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