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    Rights statement: This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 148, 2018 DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2018.02.006

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Concurrent Elections and Political Accountability: Evidence from Italian Local Elections

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>04/2018
<mark>Journal</mark>Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization
Volume148
Number of pages15
Pages (from-to)135-149
Publication statusPublished
Early online date9/02/18
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

This paper analyses the effects of holding concurrent elections in multi-tiered government structures on turnout decision and voting behaviour, based on municipal and provincial electoral data from Italy during the 2000s. When the less salient provincial elections are held concurrently with the highly salient municipal elections, we observe three main effects: (1) turnout increases significantly by almost ten percentage points; (2) issues that are specific to the more salient (mayoral) contest affect the less salient (provincial) contest, with mayors’ fiscal decisions impacting on the vote share of provincial incumbents; (3) issues that are specific to the less salient (provincial) contest stop affecting provincial elections outcomes. These findings shed light on how voters acquire information on incumbent politicians, and suggests that the effectiveness of an election as an accountability tool may be hindered by the concurrence with higher-stakes elections.

Bibliographic note

This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 148, 2018 DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2018.02.006