nep-cdm New Economics Papers
on Collective Decision-Making
Issue of 2017‒04‒16
thirteen papers chosen by
Stan C. Weeber, McNeese State University

  1. Are Hard-Working MPs Electorally Rewarded? Empirical Evidence from the 2007 French Legislative Elections By Abel FRANCOIS; Julien NAVARRO
  2. Inherited Institutions: Cooperation in the Light of Democratic Legitimacy By Pascal Langenbach; Franziska Tausch
  3. Why Does Social Capital Increase Government Performance? The Role of Local Elections across Italian Municipalities By Alberto Batinti; Andrea Filippetti; Luca Andriani
  4. Blockholder Voting By Bar-Isaac, Heski; Shapiro, Joel
  5. Humans' (incorrect) distrust of reflective decisions By Cabrales, Antonio; Espin, Antonio; Kujal, Praveen; Rassenti, Stephen
  6. The Effect of Far Right Parties on the Location Choice of Immigrants: Evidence from Lega Nord Mayors By Bracco, Emanuele; De Paola, Maria; Green, Colin P.; Scoppa, Vincenzo
  7. The Limits of Political Compromise: Debt Ceilings and Political Turnover By Cunha, Alexandre B.; Ornelas, Emanuel
  8. They win, I leave: the impact of the Northern League party on foreign internal migration By Egidio Farina
  10. Network Formation and Disruption - An Experiment. Are efficient networks too complex? By Sonja Brangewitz; Behnud Mir Djawadi; Angelika Endres; Britta Hoyer
  11. Female political representation in the aftermath of ethnic violence: A comparative analysis of Burundi and Rwanda By Andrea Guariso; Bert Ingelaere; Marijke Verpoorten
  12. Who Voted for Brexit? A Comprehensive District-Level Analysis By Becker, Sascha O.; Fetzer, Thiemo; Novy, Dennis
  13. Cooperation in polygynous households: By Barr, Abigail; Dekker, Marleen; Janssens, Wendy; Kebede, Bereket; Kramer, Berber

  1. By: Abel FRANCOIS (LEM-CNRS (UMR 9221), Université de Lille 1 Sciences et Technologies); Julien NAVARRO (ESPOL, Université Catholique de Lille)
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to study the impact of incumbent MPs’ activities on their electoral fortune. In other words, are incumbents with a strong parliamentary record rewarded by their party and their voters? We ask this question in the context of the French political system characterized by: an executive domination; a candidate-centered electoral system; and an electoral agenda maximizing the impact of the presidential elections. Since these three institutional features have contradictory expected effects on relationship between MP’s activities and electoral fortune, their overall impact can only be assessed empirically. Taking the 2007 French legislative elections as a study case, we test the effects of several measurements of the MPs’ activities on both votes share and reelection probability, and we take into account the potential bias related to the decision to be candidate. Our results show that MPs’ activities differently impact both the incumbents’ candidacy prospects, their first-round vote share and their reelection. Despite the weakness of the French National Assembly, it is demonstrated that several parliamentary activities, especially bill-initiation, have a positive effect on the MPs’ probability of running again and staying in office.
    Keywords: Personal voting, Parliamentary activities and productivity, Incumbent candidacy and reelection, Electoral reward.
    JEL: D72
    Date: 2017
  2. By: Pascal Langenbach (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods); Franziska Tausch (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods)
    Abstract: We experimentally investigate whether the procedural history of a sanctioning institution affects cooperation in a social dilemma. Subjects inherit the institutional setting from a previous generation of subjects who either decided on the implementation of the institution democratically by majority vote or were exogenously assigned a setting. In order to isolate the impact of the voting procedure, no information about the cooperation history is provided. In line with existing empirical evidence, we observe that in the starting generation cooperation is higher (lower) with a democratically chosen (rejected) institution, as compared to the corresponding, randomly imposed setting. In the second generation, the procedural history only partly affects cooperation. While there is no positive democracy effect when the institution is implemented, the vote-based rejection of the institution negatively affects cooperation in the second generation. The effect size is similar to that in the first generation.
    Keywords: Endogeneity, Voting, Institutions, Social dilemma, Public good, Inherited rules
    JEL: C92 D02 D71 D72 H41
    Date: 2017–01
  3. By: Alberto Batinti (School of Public Economics and Administration, Shanghai University of Finance); Andrea Filippetti (National Research Council (CNR), Rome, Italy); Luca Andriani (Department of Management, Birkbeck, University of London)
    Abstract: There is wide consensus that social capital increases government performance. However, the very mechanism underlying the relationship between social capital and well-performing governments remains unclear. In this paper we focus on the budgetary composition of local governments and find that the joint effect of larger social capital and higher quality in government’s spending improves the re-election chances of incumbent policy makers. By looking at 8,000 Italian municipalities over the period 2003-2012, we show that incumbent mayors who carry out a forward-looking and transparent fiscal agenda are more likely to be reelected where the level of local social capital is larger. In contextswith larger social capital, we obtain a non-trivial average effect of a 54% larger probability to be reelected when a more forward-looking agenda is in place. Thus, the good conduct of incumbent mayors is rewarded, but only in contexts with more social capital. Twin estimates considering a more transparent fiscal agenda are not significantbut show the predicted sign and the comparable size of a 31% larger probability. Our evidence is robust when controlling for the political budget cycle, and provides ground for further exploration of the electoral mechanism as an important channel to explain the connection between social capital and good government performance.
    Date: 2017–04
  4. By: Bar-Isaac, Heski; Shapiro, Joel
    Abstract: By introducing a shareholder with many votes (a blockholder) to a standard model of voting, we uncover several striking results. First, if a blockholder is unbiased, she may not vote with all of her shares. This is efficient, as it prevents her vote from drowning out the information provided by other votes. Second, if this blockholder can announce her vote before the vote takes place, other shareholders may ignore their information and vote with the blockholder to support her superior information. Third, if the blockholder is biased, some shareholders will try to counter the blockholder's vote. The results are robust to allowing for information acquisition and trade. This suggests that regulations discouraging or prohibiting abstention, strategic behavior, and/or coordination may reduce efficiency.
    Keywords: Blockholder; corporate governance; shareholder voting
    JEL: D72 G34
    Date: 2017–03
  5. By: Cabrales, Antonio; Espin, Antonio; Kujal, Praveen; Rassenti, Stephen
    Abstract: Recent experiments suggest that social behavior may be shaped by the time available for decision making. It is known that fast decision making relies more on intuition whereas slow decision making is affected by reflective processes. Little is known, however, about whether people correctly anticipate the effect of intuition vs. reflection on others' decision making. This is important in everyday situations where anticipating others' behavior is often essential. A good example of this is the extensively studied Trust Game where the trustor, by sending an amount of money to the trustee, runs the risk of being exploited by the trusteee's subsequent action. We use this game to study how trustors' choices are affected by whether trustees are externally forced to respond quickly or slowly. We also examine whether trustors' own tendency to stop and reflect on their intuitions (as measured by the Cognitive Reflection Test) moderates how they anticipate the effect of reflection on the behavior of trustees. We find that the least reflective trustors send less money when trustees are forced to respond "reflectively" rather than "intuitively" , but we also argue that this is a wrong choice. In general, no group, including the ones with the largest number of reflective individuals, is good at anticipating the (positive) effect of forced delay on others' trustworthiness.
    Keywords: beliefs; dual-process; intuition; reflection; Trust; trustworthiness
    Date: 2017–04
  6. By: Bracco, Emanuele (Lancaster University); De Paola, Maria (University of Calabria); Green, Colin P. (Lancaster University); Scoppa, Vincenzo (University of Calabria)
    Abstract: Immigration has increasingly taken centre-stage in the political landscape. Part of this has been rise in far-right, anti-immigration parties in a range of countries. Existing evidence suggests that the presence of immigrants has a substantial effect on the political views of the electorate, generating an advantage to these parties with anti-immigration or nationalist platforms. This paper explores a closely related but overlooked issue: how immigrant behavior is influenced by these parties. We focus on immigrant location decisions in Northern Italy which has seen the rise of the anti-immigration party Lega Nord. We construct a dataset of mayoral elections in Italy for the years 2002-2014, and calculate the effect of electing a mayor belonging to, or supported by Lega Nord. To identify this relationship we focus on mayors who have been elected with narrow margins of victory in a Regression Discontinuity framework. The election of Lega Nord mayor discourages immigrants from moving into the municipality.
    Keywords: immigration, geographical mobility, voting behavior, political economy, regression discontinuity design
    JEL: J15 J61 D72
    Date: 2017–03
  7. By: Cunha, Alexandre B.; Ornelas, Emanuel
    Abstract: We study the desirability of limits on the public debt and of political turnover in an economy where incumbents have an incentive to set public expenditures above the socially optimal level due to rent-seeking motives. Parties alternate in office and cannot commit to future policies, but they can forge a political compromise where each party curbs excessive spending when in office if it expects future governments to do the same. In contrast to the received literature, we find that strict limits on government borrowing can exacerbate political economy distortions by making a political compromise unsustainable. This tends to happen when political turnover is limited. Conversely, a tight limit on the public debt fosters a compromise that yields the efficient outcome if political turnover is vigorous. Our analysis thus suggests that to sustain good economic policies, a society needs to restrict either the extent of political turnover or the ability of governments to issue debt, but not both.
    Keywords: debt limits; political turnover; efficient policies; fiscal rules
    JEL: E61 E62 H30 H63
    Date: 2017–03
  8. By: Egidio Farina (Department of Economics, University of Sussex)
    Abstract: This paper studies how electoral outcomes can shape individuals’ migration decisions. Using the Italian mayoral elections data from 2001 to 2014, I study how foreign citizens’ internal migration with a regular residency permit in North-Italy can be affected by the election of a mayor affiliated to the Northern League (Lega Nord) party, a far-right political movement characterized by a strong federalist, populist and anti-immigration ideology. In order to deal with the endogeneity of Northern League to city characteristics, a sharp regression discontinuity is used. Overall the results show that a mayor affiliated to the Northern League party causes an increase in the foreign out-migration rate one year after the election.
    Keywords: Northern League mayor, partisanship, close elections, regression discontinuity, migration
    JEL: R23 D72
    Date: 2017–04
  9. By: Shashi Pandey
    Abstract: The paper attempts to understand the role of women of self help groups (SHGS) of OBC, SC and Mixed membership in the household decision -making before joining the groups and ten years of after joining the groups. A sample of six self help groups belonging to OBC, SC and mixed group membership has been selected from three villages of Allahabad district of Uttar Pradesh. Data are collected through focus group discussions and interviews of members of SHGs. Analysis of data reveals that the role of women in making decisions like schooling of children specially for girls, family planning, casting votes, and decisions on moving alone to places located far from the village has increased after joining the group. It was also found that the SC women are participating more in household decision making in comparison to other groups. A trend of taking consensus decision making is emerging and domination of men in such decisions is slowly declining. Key Words: Self-Help Groups, Family Decision-Making and Women Empowerment. Policy
    Date: 2017–03
  10. By: Sonja Brangewitz (Paderborn University); Behnud Mir Djawadi (Paderborn University); Angelika Endres (Paderborn University); Britta Hoyer (Paderborn University)
    Abstract: We experimentally study the emergence of networks under a known external threat. To be more specific, we deal with the question if subjects in the role of a strategic Designer are able to form safe and efficient networks while facing a strategic Adversary who is going to attack their networks. This investigation relates theoretical predictions by Dziubinski and Goyal (2013) to actual observed behaviour. Varying the costs for protecting nodes, we designed and tested two treatments with different predictions for the equilibrium network. Furthermore, the in fluence of the subjects' farsightedness on their decision- making process was elicited and analysed. We find that while subjects are able to build safe networks in both treatments, equilibrium networks are only built in one of the two treatments. In the other treatment, predominantly safe networks are built but they are not efficient. Additionally, we find that farsightedness -as measured in our experiment- has no in fluence on whether subjects are able to build safe or efficient networks.
    Keywords: Networks, Experiment, Network Design, Network Defence, Network Disruption
    Date: 2017–04
  11. By: Andrea Guariso; Bert Ingelaere; Marijke Verpoorten
    Abstract: We study the impact of electoral gender quotas in post-war Burundi and Rwanda on women’s political representation. First, we look at descriptive representation by studying the number of female representatives and the prestige of their positions in the legislative and executive branches of government. Second, we focus on political representation as perceived by ordinary women, before, during, and after the introduction of gender quotas. We find that, both in Rwanda and Burundi, descriptive female political representation significantly increased with the introduction of gender quotas, with the share of women in parliament and ministries consistently exceeding 30 per cent. While women still disproportionally end up in ministries of relatively lower prestige, the gap with men is closing as more women have joined the executive branches of power. We do not find any tangible effect on women’s perceived political representation. Among the possible explanations, we discuss the authoritarian nature of the regime and the crowding out of gender identity by ethnic identity. We argue that these explanations are not entirely consistent with our data and put forward a third explanation, i.e. that the perception of political representation depends on the implementation of policies—thus substantive representation, not descriptive representation—and that men and women are to a very large extent appreciative of the same policies.
    Date: 2017
  12. By: Becker, Sascha O.; Fetzer, Thiemo; Novy, Dennis
    Abstract: On 23 June 2016, the British electorate voted to leave the European Union. We analyze vote and turnout shares across 380 local authority areas in the United Kingdom. We find that exposure to the EU in terms of immigration and trade provides relatively little explanatory power for the referendum vote. Instead, we find that fundamental characteristics of the voting population were key drivers of the Vote Leave share, in particular their education profiles, their historical dependence on manufacturing employment as well as low income and high unemployment. At the much finer level of wards within cities, we find that areas with deprivation in terms of education, income and employment were more likely to vote Leave. Our results indicate that a higher turnout of younger voters, who were more likely to vote Remain, would not have overturned the referendum result.
    Keywords: austerity; EU; globalisation; migration; political economy; Referendum; Scotland; UK; voting
    JEL: D72 N44 R23 Z13
    Date: 2017–04
  13. By: Barr, Abigail; Dekker, Marleen; Janssens, Wendy; Kebede, Bereket; Kramer, Berber
    Abstract: Evidence that monogamous spouses often compromise household gains to maintain individual control over resources has informed the design of cash transfer schemes and other poverty alleviation programs. In polygynous households, decision making may be even less cooperative as co-wife conflict is common and welfare outcomes are often worse than in monogamous households, despite polygyny being associated with better ex ante prospects. Using a carefully designed series of two-person public goods games, we conduct a quantitative, ceteris paribus comparison of willingness to cooperate to maximize household gains across the two household types. We find that polygynous spouses and co-wives are less cooperative, one with another, than monogamous spouses. Co-wives are least cooperative toward each other and polygynous husbands are less cooperative with each of their wives than monogamous husbands are with their one wife. Finally, there are differences across the household types in the way husbands and wives condition their cooperativeness on how much they believe their spouses and co-wives will cooperate. Specifically, behavior in polygynous households is more reciprocal and apparently less altruistic than in monogamous households. This has implications for the design of poverty alleviation programs that transfer resources either in cash or in-kind.
    Keywords: poverty; households; marriage; cooperative activities; decision making; resource allocation; gender; women; sociology, cooperative decision making; polygyny,
    Date: 2017

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