New Economics Papers
on Collective Decision-Making
Issue of 2008‒12‒21
five papers chosen by

  1. What determines the length of a typical Canadian parliamentary government? By Stephen Ferris; Marcel Voia
  2. Political Power of the Czech Representatives in the European Parliament By Mielcova, Elena; Cemerkova, Sarka
  3. The Vote, The Politics and the interjurisdictional Transfers: The Romanian Case By Mutascu, Mutascu
  4. Can Median-Maximizing Behavior Be Rational? By Vivek Dehejia; Jiankang Zhang
  5. Une forme minimale de coopération By Paternotte, Cédric

  1. By: Stephen Ferris (Department of Economics, Carleton University); Marcel Voia (Department of Economics, Carleton University)
    Abstract: In this paper we examine the length of political tenure in Canadian federally elected parliamentary governments since 1867. Using data on tenure length, we categorize the distribution of governing tenures in terms of a hazard function--the probability that an election will arise in each year, given that an election has not yet been called. We then ask whether that distribution responds in a systematic way to characteristics of the political and/or economic environment. Our particular focus is on whether there is evidence of electoral timing and whether governing parties have used economy policy in conjunction with federal elections. Finally we investigate whether partisan effects emerge. The results suggest that, independent of party affiliation, governing parties do engage in election timing. The data also suggest that election calls coincide with periods of monetary expansion and more with tax decreases than with expenditure increases, supporting the Persson and Tabellini (2003) hypothesis that under parliamentary systems, it is tax cuts (rather than expenditure increases) that will be most closely associated with elections. Unlike the case in other parliamentary systems, however, Canadian data also support the hypothesis that tough measures (expenditure cuts) are postponed until after elections.
    Keywords: duration models, election timing, political business cycles, political policy cycles.
    JEL: C41 H11
    Date: 2008–10–01
  2. By: Mielcova, Elena; Cemerkova, Sarka
    Abstract: The main aim of the article is to compare the power of the Czech representatives in the European Parliament with the power of representatives from other countries, and to compare the power of the Czech political parties in the Lower House of the Czech Parliament with the power of parties’ representatives as European parliamentary political group’s members.
    Keywords: European Parliament; Czech Parliament; political parties; power index; index of advantage; index of power advantage
    JEL: H11 C71
    Date: 2008–05–02
  3. By: Mutascu, Mutascu
    Abstract: This paper represents a continuation of a previous paper, Mutaşcu & Dima (2005), where we demonstrated the “abnormal” behavior that local authority from Romania is manifesting regarding the subventions received from the central budget. In accord with public choice theory, exist an “affinity” of a social group - local communities in this case - for a certain political party or political coalition, in which case can expect that the distribution of public funds, having the nature of transfers given by the central budget to local budgets, to be impregnated with a considerable “political color”. This paper is trying to establish, in Romania, quantitative and qualitative, the modality of distributing the central public funds to local authorities under the political impact.
    Keywords: Politic; voter; local financing
    JEL: E62 D70 R11
    Date: 2008–11–13
  4. By: Vivek Dehejia (Department of Economics, Carleton University); Jiankang Zhang (Department of Economics, Carleton University)
    Abstract: In this note, we consider a perennial problem in single-person choice theory, that is, characterizing choice under uncertainty. In particular, we consider a hypothesis put forward by Joseph Stiglitz (2005), suggesting that median-maximing behavior may be optimal under certain circumstances, and consider how it might best be rationalized within choice theory as it is currently conceived. As is well known, median-maximizing behavior is not generally optimal in the classical VNM framework. Our main result is that it is possible to rationalize the Stiglitz hypothesis in the Machina-Schmeidler (1992) framework of probabilistic sophistication.
    JEL: D81
    Date: 2008–11–03
  5. By: Paternotte, Cédric
    Abstract: Dans cet article, l'auteur décrit et caractérise une forme minimale de coopération, correspondant aux actions de masse impliquant un grand nombre d'agents, telles des manifestations. Il en détaille les aspects intentionnel, épistémique,stratégique et téléologique, qui résultent pour la plupart d'un aaffaiblissement spécifique que de concepts classiques. Parallèlement, l'auteur souligne le rôle crucial de concepts issus de la théorie des jeux pour la définition d'une action conjointe, minimale ou non. En fin, il soutient que la question de la rationalité d'une telle action coopérative minimale est essentielle à sa définition, alors que les analyses habituelles la considèrent au mieux comme une caractéristique possible ou souhaitable.
    Keywords: Coopération; action collective; intention de groupe; objectif collectif; équilibre; rationalité
    JEL: C71
    Date: 2008–07–01

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