New Economics Papers
on Collective Decision-Making
Issue of 2010‒05‒08
four papers chosen by

  1. Public Goods and Voting on Formal Sanction Schemes: An Experiment By Louis Putterman; Jean-Robert Tyran; Kenju Kamei
  2. Emerging Non-OECD Countries: Global Shifts in Power and Geopolitical Regionalization By Anika Moroff
  3. Twenty Years of Political Transition By Tresiman, Daniel
  4. Joblessness and Perceptions about the Effectiveness of Democracy By Duha Altindag; Naci Mocan

  1. By: Louis Putterman; Jean-Robert Tyran; Kenju Kamei
    Abstract: The burgeoning literature on the use of sanctions to support public goods provision has largely neglected the use of formal or centralized sanctions. We let subjects playing a linear public goods game vote on the parameters of a formal sanction scheme capable both of resolving and of exacerbating the free-rider problem, depending on parameter settings. Most groups quickly learned to choose parameters inducing efficient outcomes. But despite uniform money payoffs implying common interest in those parameters, voting patterns suggest significant influence of cooperative orientation, political attitudes, and of gender and intelligence.
    Keywords: Public good; voluntary contribution; formal sanction; experiment; penalty;
    Date: 2010
  2. By: Anika Moroff (GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies)
    Abstract: Since 1990 the banning of ethnic and other identity-based parties has become the norm in sub-Saharan Africa. This article focuses on Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda as three East African countries that have opted for different ways of dealing with such parties. Using case studies, it traces the origins of the party bans in Tanzania and Uganda and explores the reasons for the absence of a ban in Kenya. The analysis shows that the laws on particularistic parties have actually been implemented by the appropriate institutions. However,these laws have only marginally influenced the character of the political parties in the three countries: A comparison of regional voting patterns suggests that bans on particularistic parties have not ensured the emergence of aggregative parties with a national following in Tanzania and Uganda. In Kenya on the other hand, where such a ban was nonexistent until 2008, parties have not proven to be more regional.
    Keywords: Sub-Saharan Africa, party ban, ethnic parties, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda,party regulation, party nationalization
    JEL: F23 L14 O14
    Date: 2010–04
  3. By: Tresiman, Daniel
    Abstract: What explains the divergent political paths that the post-communist countries of Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union have followed since the fall of the Berlin Wall? While some appear today to be consolidated democracies, others have all the features of consolidated autocracy. This study reviews the patterns of change and examines correlates of progress towards democracy. Variation across post-communist countries in the degree of democracy twenty years after the start of transition can be parsimoniously explained by two variables: the length of time the country spent under a communist regime and—within the former Soviet Union, but not Eastern Europe—the proportion of Muslim adherents in the population.
    Keywords: democracy, transition, post-communism, Islam
    Date: 2010
  4. By: Duha Altindag (Louisiana State University); Naci Mocan (Louisiana State University)
    Abstract: Using micro data on more than 130,000 individuals from 69 countries, we analyze the extent to which joblessness of the individuals and the prevailing unemployment rate in the country impact perceptions of the effectiveness of democracy. We find that personal joblessness experience translates into negative opinions about the effectiveness of democracy, and it increases the desire for a rouge leader. Evidence from people who live in European countries suggests that being jobless for more than a year is the main source of the impact. Joblessness-related negative attitude towards the effectiveness of democracy is not because of a general displeasure towards the government, but rather, it is targeted towards democracy. We also find that well-educated and wealthier individuals are less likely to indicate that democracies are ineffective. The beliefs about the effectiveness of democracy as system of governance are also shaped by the unemployment rate in countries with low levels of democracy. The results suggest that periods of high unemployment and joblessness would hinder the development of democracy.
    Keywords: Unemployment duration, Democracy, Education, Development, World Values Survey
    JEL: J2 O1 P1
    Date: 2010–05

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