nep-cdm New Economics Papers
on Collective Decision-Making
Issue of 2022‒05‒09
eight papers chosen by
Stan C. Weeber, McNeese State University

  1. Not-so-strategic voters. Evidence from an in situ experiment during the 2017 French presidential election By Antoinette Baujard; Isabelle Lebon
  2. Do Labels Polarise? Theory and Evidence from the Brexit Referendum By Su-Min; Alexandru
  3. Political Support, Cognitive Dissonance and Political Preferences By Tanja Artiga González; Francesco Capozza; Georg D. Granic
  4. Exit polls and voter turnout in the 2017 French elections By Alberto Grillo; Eva Raiber
  5. Agglomeration bonus and endogenous group formation By François Bareille; Matteo Zavalloni; Davide Viaggi
  6. How Does Group-Decision Making Affect Subsequent Individual Behavior? By Philipp Dörrenberg; Christoph Feldhaus
  7. When Does Money Matter for Elections? By Julia Cage; Edgard Dewitte
  8. Pledges and how social influence shapes their effectiveness By Koessler, Ann Kathrin

  1. By: Antoinette Baujard (UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Étienne]); Isabelle Lebon (CREM - Centre de recherche en économie et management - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UR1 - Université de Rennes 1 - UNIV-RENNES - Université de Rennes - UNICAEN - Université de Caen Normandie - NU - Normandie Université)
    Abstract: An experiment carried out in situ during the 2017 French presidential election provides the natural conditions in which to disentangle the motivations of expressive voting and strategic voting as determinants of voters' choice. Under the two-round plurality rule, when voters vote for a single candidate in the first round, they may wish primarily to express which is their favorite candidate, or, rather, to influence the outcome of the second-round outcome by strategic voting. These two motives may coincide or conflict. We show that insincere strategic voting is relatively low in this context since it represents less than 7% of the votes cast. When the expressive and the strategic motives conflict with each other, i.e., where expression requires giving up any influence on the outcome of the election, we show that voters are twice as likely to eschew strategic voting as to vote strategically.
    Keywords: In Situ Experiment,Strategy vs. Expression dilemma,Expression of preferences,Voting behavior,Strategic behavior,Two-round plurality vote
    Date: 2022–02
  2. By: Su-Min; Alexandru
    Abstract: Why has geographical political polarisation increased in recent times? We propose a theoretical social learning mechanism whereby policy preferences become more homogeneous within geographical units, yet increasingly heterogeneous between units over time as voters become better informed on the views of those in their vicinity. To study our model’s predictions, we exploit the delayed implementation of Brexit and its salience in the elections following the 2016 referendum. Analysing constituency-level longitudinal-data, we find that voters updated their Brexit views after observing the referendum’s local results, and acted upon their new beliefs in the following elections. We document a two percentage-point relative decrease in the (anti-Brexit) Liberal Democrat vote share in constituencies where Leave narrowly won, mirrored by an increase for the Conservatives. Our findings have implications for how group-based identities form more broadly.
    Keywords: Elections, Brexit, Local Contextual Effects, Information, Social Learning, Political Attitudes
    JEL: D71 D72
    Date: 2022–04–11
  3. By: Tanja Artiga González; Francesco Capozza; Georg D. Granic
    Abstract: Voters often express support for a candidate whose policy platforms differ from their ideal policy preferences. We argue that under these circumstance acts of expressing support can causally change voters’ policy preferences. We conceptualize our arguments in a theoretical model of policy preference changes rooted in cognitive dissonance theory. A pre-registered, online experiment with 1,200 U.S. participants confirms our main hypotheses. As predicted by cognitive dissonance theory, voters align their policy preferences with those of the supported candidate. The more important the policy issue, the sharper the change in preferences. We also find that larger pre-support policy distance and higher effort in expressing support increases the magnitude of preference changes. Our results suggest that policy preferences can change mechanically after voters express support for a candidate.
    Keywords: political participation, political support, political preferences, cognitive dissonance, online experiment
    JEL: C91 D72 D91
    Date: 2022
  4. By: Alberto Grillo (Aix-Marseille University, CNRS, AMSE, Marseille, France); Eva Raiber (Aix-Marseille University, CNRS, AMSE, Marseille, France)
    Abstract: Belgian and Swiss media regularly interfere during French elections by releasing exit polls before polling stations close. These foreign media profit from a law forbidding the same behavior by their French counterparts to receive large inflows of web visits from France. We exploit the unusual timing and degree of confidence with which exit polls were released in the second round of the 2017 presidential elections to investigate their effect on voter turnout. Our analysis is based on comparing turnout rates at different times on the election day, in the first and second round, and with respect to previous elections. We find a significant decrease in turnout of around 3 to 4 percentage points after the exit polls' publication which is suggestive of a causal effect, although similar trends were observed in previous elections. The effect is stronger in departments close to the Belgian border shortly after the release of the exit polls. We do not find clear evidence that either candidate benefited from the decrease in turnout, yet we cannot exclude the presence of a small underdog effect which reduced the winning margin by around 1 percentage point.
    Keywords: exit polls, voter turnout, underdog effect, bandwagon effect
    JEL: D72
    Date: 2022–04
  5. By: François Bareille (UMR PSAE - Paris-Saclay Applied Economics - AgroParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Matteo Zavalloni (Department of Agricultural and Food Sciences (DISTAL) - Università di Bologna); Davide Viaggi (Department of Agricultural and Food Sciences (DISTAL) - Università di Bologna)
    Abstract: Agglomeration bonus schemes are envisioned to incentivize the connectivity of habitat conservation across landowners. Assuming full cooperation among landowners at the landscape scale, the bulk of the literature theoretically finds that agglomeration bonus schemes are more cost effective in achieving biodiversity conservation than spatially homogenous payments. However, it may be rational for landowners not to cooperate all together but, rather, to cooperate within smaller groups. Here, we analyze the cost effectiveness of agglomeration bonus schemes when such partial cooperation is allowed, that is, when cooperation is endogenously chosen. We introduce a spatially explicit ecological-economic model within a coalition formation game to assess how landowners form stable coalition structures and how this affects biodiversity conservation under a wide range of (i) degrees of spatial cost autocorrelation, (ii) bonuses and flat-rate payments, (iii) species dispersal rates, and (iv) coordination costs. We find that agglomeration bonus schemes are more cost effective than homogenous payments only for low public expenditures. This condition is not identified if full cooperation is assumed. We find, however, that full cooperation never emerges and hence that such an assumption leads to an overestimation of the cost effectiveness of agglomeration bonus schemes. Moreover, we find that the cost effectiveness of agglomeration bonus schemes increases when the spatial cost autocorrelation and species dispersal rate decrease. Finally, coordination costs do not affect the cost effectiveness of the agglomeration bonus scheme but they have implications for its design because of their impact on coalition formation.
    Abstract: Les systèmes de primes d'agglomération sont conçus pour encourager la connectivité de la conservation des habitats entre les propriétaires fonciers. Dans l'hypothèse d'une coopération totale entre les propriétaires fonciers à l'échelle du paysage, l'essentiel de la littérature montre théoriquement que les systèmes de primes d'agglomération sont plus rentables pour la conservation de la biodiversité que les paiements spatialement homogènes. Cependant, il peut être rationnel pour les propriétaires fonciers de ne pas coopérer tous ensemble, mais plutôt de coopérer au sein de groupes plus petits. Nous analysons ici la rentabilité des systèmes de primes d'agglomération lorsqu'une telle coopération partielle est autorisée, c'est-à-dire lorsque la coopération est choisie de manière endogène. Nous introduisons un modèle éco-économique spatialement explicite dans un jeu de formation de coalition pour évaluer comment les propriétaires terriens forment des structures de coalition stables et comment cela affecte la conservation de la biodiversité sous une large gamme de (i) degrés d'autocorrélation spatiale des coûts, (ii) primes et paiements forfaitaires, (iii) taux de dispersion des espèces, et (iv) coûts de coordination. Nous constatons que les systèmes de primes d'agglomération sont plus rentables que les paiements homogènes uniquement lorsque les dépenses publiques sont faibles. Cette condition n'est pas identifiée si l'on suppose une coopération totale. Nous constatons cependant qu'une coopération totale n'apparaît jamais et qu'une telle hypothèse conduit à une surestimation de la rentabilité des systèmes de primes d'agglomération. En outre, nous constatons que la rentabilité des systèmes de primes d'agglomération augmente lorsque l'autocorrélation des coûts spatiaux et le taux de dispersion des espèces diminuent. Enfin, les coûts de coordination n'affectent pas le rapport coût-efficacité du système de primes d'agglomération, mais ils ont des implications pour sa conception en raison de leur impact sur la formation de coalitions.
    Keywords: Biodiversity conservation,Collective incentive,Environmental subsidies,Green club
    Date: 2022–02–09
  6. By: Philipp Dörrenberg; Christoph Feldhaus
    Abstract: Do groups and individuals behave differently in dictator games with varying deservingness of the recipient? Does the involvement in group-decision making affect the decisions of group members in subsequent individual decisions? We address these questions using a controlled dictator-game experiment and find the following main results. First, groups and individuals are not different w.r.t. their dictator-game decisions and recipient deservingness does not have a different effect on groups than on individuals. Second, participants who were previously part of a group decision process are more generous in a subsequent individual-level decision than participants who previously made individual decisions. We exploit the chat protocols of group discussions to shed light on the mechanism behind this result. Consistent with moral balancing, we show that the effect of group-decision making on subsequent individual decisions is driven by subjects who intent to make good for the initial group decision.
    Keywords: group-decision making, dictator game, recipient deservingness, moral balancing
    JEL: C91 C92 D91
    Date: 2022
  7. By: Julia Cage (ECON - Département d'économie (Sciences Po) - Sciences Po - Sciences Po - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, LIEPP - Laboratoire interdisciplinaire d'évaluation des politiques publiques (Sciences Po) - Sciences Po - Sciences Po); Edgard Dewitte (ECON - Département d'économie (Sciences Po) - Sciences Po - Sciences Po - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, LIEPP - Laboratoire interdisciplinaire d'évaluation des politiques publiques (Sciences Po) - Sciences Po - Sciences Po)
    Abstract: This paper studies electoral campaigns over the long run, through the lens of their spending. In particular, we ask whether changing media technologies and electoral environments have impacted patterns of campaign spending, and their correlation with electoral results. To do so, we build a novel exhaustive dataset on general elections in the United Kingdom from 1857 to 2017, which in­cludes information on campaign spending (itemized by expense categories), electoral outcomes and socio­demographic characteristics for 69,042 election­-constituency­-candidates. We start by providing new insights on the history of British political campaigns, documenting in particular the growing importance of advertising material (including via digital means), to the detriment of paid staff and electoral meetings. Using a saturated fixed effects model, we then show that there is a strong positive correlation between expenditures and votes, and that overall the magnitude of this relationship has strongly increased since the 1880s, peaking in the last quarter of the 20th century. We link these transformations to changes in the conduct of campaigns, and to the introduction of new information technologies. We show in particular that the expansion of local radio and broadband Internet increased the sensitivity of the electoral results to differences in campaign spending.
    Abstract: Cet article étudie les campagnes électorales sur le long terme, à travers le prisme de leurs dépenses. En particulier, nous investiguons l'impact des évolutions majeures dans les technologies de l'information et les contextes électoraux sur les niveaux, allocations et influences des dépenses des candidats. Pour ce faire, nous construisons un nouvel ensemble de données exhaustif sur les élections générales au Royaume­Uni de 1857 à 2017, qui comprend des informations sur les dépenses de campagne (détaillées par catégories de dépenses), les résultats électoraux et les caractéristiques socio­démographiques de 69042 candidats­-élections­-circonscriptions. Nous commençons par apporter de nouveaux éclairages sur l'histoire des campagnes politiques britanniques, en documentant notamment l'importance croissante du matériel publicitaire (y compris via des moyens numériques), au détriment du personnel rémunéré et des meetings électoraux. À l'aide d'un modèle à effets fixes, nous montrons ensuite qu'il existe une forte corrélation positive entre les dépenses des candidats et les résultats électoraux de ceux­ci, et que, dans l'ensemble, la magnitude de cette relation a fortement augmenté depuis les années 1880, pour atteindre un pic dans le dernier quart du XXe siècle. Nous lions ces transformations à des changements dans les stratégies de campagne et à l'introduction de nouvelles technologies de l'information. Nous montrons en particulier que l'expansion de la radio locale et de l'ADSL a augmenté la sensibilité des résultats électoraux aux différences de dépenses de campagne.
    Keywords: Electoral campaigns,Campaign spending,Elections
    Date: 2022–03–10
  8. By: Koessler, Ann Kathrin
    Abstract: Pledges are used to signal the intention to act in a socially desirable way. In this study, we examine what role social influence plays in the decision to pledge. In a laboratory experiment, subjects can make a pledge to contribute to a public good in the socially optimal way. Across treatment conditions, we vary the way in which the pledges are elicited. Hence, the degree of social influence on pledge-making is manipulated and its impact can be examined. We find that when individuals are aware that the majority of other subjects decided to pledge, they are likely to conform and also make the pledge. The emergence of such a critical mass can be stimulated by (institutional) design, namely by determining the elicitation order on the basis of previous behavior. Overall, this commitment nudge is effective. Both socially-oriented and previously not socially-oriented subjects modify their behavior after the pledge.
    Keywords: commitment; conformity; pledgeability; promise; public good; social dilemma; social influence
    JEL: A13 C71 C91 H41
    Date: 2022–06–01

This nep-cdm issue is ©2022 by Stan C. Weeber. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.