nep-cdm New Economics Papers
on Collective Decision-Making
Issue of 2016‒03‒06
twelve papers chosen by
Stan C. Weeber, McNeese State University

  1. How Political Parties Shape Electoral Competition By Motz, Nicolas
  2. MR. ROSSI, MR. HU AND POLITICS. THE ROLE OF IMMIGRATION IN SHAPING NATIVES’ VOTING BEHAVIOR By Guglielmo Barone; Alessio D’Ignazio; Guido de Blasio; Paolo Naticchioni
  3. "We're in this together": Changing intra-household decision making for more cooperative smallholder farming By Lecoutere, Els; Jassogne, Laurence
  4. From Chavismo to a democratic left in Venezuela By Antonio Lecuna
  5. An Appraisal of History-bound Reelections By Gersbach, Hans
  6. Constructing Social Division to Support Cooperation By Choy , James
  7. Politics and investment: examining the territorial allocation of public investment in Greece By Psycharis, Yannis; Rodriguez-Pose, Andres; Tselios, Vassilis
  8. Clusters and collective learning networks: the case of the Competitiveness Cluster ‘Secure Communicating Solutions’ in the French Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Region By Christian Longhi
  9. Dynamics of Political Budget Cycle By Manjhi, Ganesh; Keswani Mehra, Meeta
  10. Epistemic democracy with correlated voters By Pivato, Marcus
  11. Bread and Bullets By Akerlof, George A.; Snower, Dennis J.
  12. Correlation, Partitioning and the Probability of Casting a Decisive Vote under the Majority Rule By Le Breton, Michel; Lepelley, Dominique; Smaoui, Hatem

  1. By: Motz, Nicolas
    Abstract: This paper provides a model of party formation that can explain the contrast observable in the US between highly competitive presidential elections and state election that are often dominated by one party. The puzzling aspect of this pattern is that the barriers to entry that seem to exist at the state level do not apply to the federal level. The explanation that the model provides rests on the career concerns of politicians: state politicians would like to advance their career to the federal level, but only have the opportunity of doing so as a member of a federally successful party. If politicians value such career opportunities sufficiently strongly, entry of additional parties at the state level does not occur. There then exists an equilibrium with two parties, one centre-left and one centre-right, where each party dominates some states. When career concerns are weak, on the other hand, the number of parties in equilibrium will be larger with a tendency towards parties with a narrower ideological profile. In addition to explaining the patterns observable in election results, the model also makes empirical predictions regarding the sorting of politicians into parties across different regions.
    Keywords: Political Parties, Electoral Competition
    JEL: D72
    Date: 2016–02
  2. By: Guglielmo Barone (Bank of Italy and RCEA); Alessio D’Ignazio (Bank of Italy); Guido de Blasio (Bank of Italy); Paolo Naticchioni (Roma Tre University and IZA)
    Abstract: Using Italian municipality-level data on national elections and IV estimation strategy, we find that immigration generates a sizable causal increase in votes for the centre-right coalition, which has a political platform less favorable to immigrants. Additional findings are: (i) the effect is heterogeneous across municipalities with different sizes; (ii) the gain in votes for the centreright coalition corresponds to a loss of votes for the centre and centre-left parties, a decrease in voter turnout, and a rise in protest votes; (iii) the relationship between immigration and electoral gains percolates to mayoral election at the municipality level; (iv) cultural diversity, competition in the labor market and for public services, and political competition are the most relevant channels at work.
    Keywords: Immigration, voting, political economy
    JEL: D72 P16 J61
    Date: 2015
  3. By: Lecoutere, Els; Jassogne, Laurence
    Abstract: Conceptualising smallholder farming households as collective action institutions, that make interrelated decisions about investment, resource use and allocation in a common household farm, may contribute to understanding widely observed uncooperative outcomes, such as yield gaps, gender gaps in productivity, suboptimal or Pareto inefficient sustainable intensification and climate change adaptation. We examine the relation between participatory intra-household decision making – as a set of ‘rules of the game’ that reduces information and bargaining power asymmetries – and cooperative, i.e. more efficient, sustainable and equitable, outcomes in smallholder coffee farming households in Uganda. We find experimental evidence that participatory decision making is positively related to investments in the common household farm. Consumption behaviour however is not fairer nor more sustainable. Participatory decision making is associated with more cooperative actual outcomes such as greater investment in sustainable intensification, consideration of women’s interests, fairer reproductive intra-household labour division, more balanced control over cash crop income and improved livelihoods.
    Keywords: smallholder farming; intra-household decision making
    Date: 2016–01
  4. By: Antonio Lecuna (School of Business and Economics, Universidad del Desarrollo)
    Abstract: Venezuela’s political institutions have mutated from a subsidised coalition that almost privatised the oil industry to a populist nationalism that is polarising society to the brink of civil war. In this paper, I examine chavismo in Venezuela as a new and unusual revelatory phenomenon and the most extreme case of leftwing populism in Latin America. The within-case analysis addresses the extreme polarisation of the political landscape and the consolidation of the Partido Socialista Unido de Venezuela (United Socialist Political Party of Venezuela, or PSUV) as a united leftwing redistributive party. The conclusions suggest that the PSUV would need to evolve into an institutionalised phenomenon –beyond the nominal leader– with a clear division of power and strong internal debate, and the diverse opposition would need to unite under one political organisation with a defined ideology that is more relevant than the single bonding effect of removing Chávez.
    Keywords: Institutions, economic development, territorial development, Venezuela, public policy.
    JEL: P16 L38
    Date: 2014–12
  5. By: Gersbach, Hans
    Abstract: In this paper we introduce history-bound reelections. In their simplest form, they are embodied in a "Score-replication Rule". Under such rules an incumbent has to match the highest vote-share he/she has obtained in any previous election in order to be reelected. We develop a simple three-period model to examine Score-replication Rules. We show that suitable variants of such rules can improve welfare as they reduce the tendency of reelected incumbents to indulge in their own preferences. At the same time, they ensure that able office-holders are reelected. Candidates might offer their own Score-replication Rule in campaigns. We outline how political competition may be affected by such new forms of elections.
    Keywords: history-bound reelections; incumbency advantage; non-competitive elections; Score-replication Rule
    JEL: D7 D82 H4
    Date: 2016–02
  6. By: Choy , James (Department of Economics, University of Warwick)
    Abstract: Many societies are divided into multiple smaller groups. Certain kinds of interaction are more likely to take place within a group than across groups. I model a reputation effect that enforces these divisions. Agents who interact with members of different groups can support lower levels of cooperation with members of their own groups. A hierarchical relationship between groups appears endogenously in equilibrium. Group divisions appear without any external cause, and improvements in formal contracting institutions may cause group divisions to disappear. Qualitative evidence from the anthropological literature is consistent with several predictions of the model.
    Keywords: Cooperation, Caste, Social Institution
    JEL: C73 O12 O17
    Date: 2016
  7. By: Psycharis, Yannis; Rodriguez-Pose, Andres; Tselios, Vassilis
    Abstract: This paper discusses how electoral politics shapes the regional allocation of public investment expenditures per capita in Greece. Using regional public investment data for 10 political periods (1975-2009), combined with electoral data by constituency, a model is proposed which captures the influence of politics on the regional distribution of public investment expenditures. The results of the analysis point to a strong relationship between electoral results and regional public investment spending. Greek governing parties have tended to reward those constituencies returning them to office. Moreover, an increase in both the absolute and relative electoral returns of the governing party in a region has traditionally been followed by greater public investment per capita in that region. Regions where the governing party (whether Liberal or Socialist) has held a monopoly of seats have been the greatest beneficiaries of this type of pork-barrel politics.
    Keywords: elections; Greece; political geography; pork-barrel politics; public investment
    JEL: H50 H77 R12 R58 Z18
    Date: 2015–02
  8. By: Christian Longhi (GREDEG - Groupe de Recherche en Droit, Economie et Gestion - UNS - Université Nice Sophia Antipolis - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: Since the development of the knowledge based economies, clusters and clusters policies have been the subject of increased interest, as sources of knowledge, innovation, and competitiveness. The paper focuses on a case study drawn from the French cluster policy, the pole of competitiveness ‘Secure Communicating Solutions’ in the French Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Region, based on two high tech clusters, Rousset – Gémenos and Sophia-Antipolis. The policy aims to provide the firms incentives to build network relations of heterogeneous actors to trigger innovative processes. The analysis of the collaborative R&D projects of the pole provides insights on the nature of the collective learning networks working in the clusters as well as the prevailing organizational forms resulting from the firms strategies. It show that knowledge spillovers are not simply “in the air” but very specific of the learning networks and clusters from which they belong. Clusters thus need to be analyzed jointly with networks in order to understand the processes underlying their innovation capacity
    Keywords: Collective Learning Networks,Knowledge,Innovation,Clusters,Cluster Policy,Social Network Analysis
    Date: 2015
  9. By: Manjhi, Ganesh; Keswani Mehra, Meeta
    Abstract: Using the method of optimal control, when an incumbent politician derives utility from voting support and dis-utility from budgetary deficit, the equilibrium time paths of both voting support and budgetary deficit are characterized in a finite time horizon under complete information. The incumbent politician may be an opportunist, in that she/ he is interested in garnering votes for herself/ himself, and manipulates budgetary deficit to achieve this, or else she/ he may be partisan, that is, characterized by heterogenous preferences, reflecting preferences for specific economic policies. The citizen-voters vote for the opportunist as well as the partisan incumbent. However, they reject the same when there is a sufficiently strong anti-incumbency in the opportunist case. The level of voting support obtained in case of both opportunist and partisan is found to be positive and rising over time, but running the budgetary deficit will be costlier for the economy in the former case than the latter. That is, per unit votes garnered by raising the budgetary deficit as compared to the benchmark deficit are lower when the incumbent is an opportunistic than when she/ he is partisan.
    Keywords: Opportunist Incumbent; Partisan Incumbent, Citizen Voters, Budgetary Deficit, Political Economy, Political Budget Cycles; Fiscal Policy; Anti-incumebency
    JEL: E3 E6 H3 H7
    Date: 2015–10–10
  10. By: Pivato, Marcus
    Abstract: We develop a general theory of epistemic democracy in large societies, which subsumes the classical Condorcet Jury Theorem, the Wisdom of Crowds, and other similar results. We show that a suitably chosen voting rule will converge to the correct answer in the large-population limit, even if there is significant correlation amongst voters, as long as the average correlation between voters becomes small as the population becomes large. Finally, we show that these hypotheses are consistent with models where voters are correlated via a social network, or through the DeGroot model of deliberation.
    Keywords: Condorcet Jury Theorem; Wisdom of Crowds; epistemic social choice; deliberation; social network; DeGroot.
    JEL: D71 D81
    Date: 2016–02–15
  11. By: Akerlof, George A. (Georgetown University); Snower, Dennis J. (Kiel Institute for the World Economy)
    Abstract: Standard economics omits the role of narratives (the stories that people tell themselves and others) when they make all kinds of decisions. Narratives play a role in understanding the environment; focusing attention; predicting events; motivating action; assigning social roles and identities; defining power relations; and establishing and conveying social norms. This paper describes the role narratives play in decision making, as it also juxtaposes this description against the backdrop of the Bolshevik-spawned narrative that played a critical role in the history of Russia and the Soviet Union in the 20th Century.
    Keywords: narrative, motivation, attention, prediction, identity, social assignment
    JEL: A12 A13 A14 D03 D04 D20 D23 D30 D62 D71 D72 D74 E02
    Date: 2016–02
  12. By: Le Breton, Michel; Lepelley, Dominique; Smaoui, Hatem
    Abstract: The main purpose of this paper is to estimate the probability of casting a decisive vote under the majority rule for a class of random electorate models encompassing the celebrated Impartial Culture (IC) and Impartial Anonymous Culture (IAC) models. The emphasis is on the impact of correlation across votes on the order of magnitude of this event. Our proof techniques use arguments from probability theory on one hand and combinatorial and algorithmic tools for counting integer points inside convex polytopes on the other hand.
    Keywords: Elections, Power Measurement, Voting, Random Electorate.
    JEL: D71 D72
    Date: 2016–02

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