Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1822/40083

TitleExperimental evidence that quorum rules discourage turnout and promote election boycotts
Author(s)Aguiar-Conraria, Luís
Magalhães, Pedro C.
Vanberg, Christoph A.
KeywordsElection design
Participation quorum
Approval quorum
Laboratory experiment
Issue dateDec-2016
PublisherSpringerOpen
JournalExperimental Economics
Abstract(s)Many democratic decision making institutions involve quorum rules. Such rules are commonly motivated by concerns about the “legitimacy” or “representativeness” of decisions reached when only a subset of eligible voters participates. A prominent example of this can be found in the context of direct democracy mechanisms, such as referenda and initiatives. We conduct a laboratory experiment to investigate the consequences of the two most common types of quorum rules: a participation quorum and an approval quorum. We find that both types of quora lead to lower participation rates, dramatically increasing the likelihood of full-fledged electoral boycotts on the part of those who endorse the Status Quo. This discouraging effect is significantly larger under a participation quorum than under an approval quorum.
TypeArticle
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/1822/40083
DOI10.1007/s10683-015-9473-9
ISSN1386-4157
Publisher versionhttp://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10683-015-9473-9
Peer-Reviewedyes
AccessRestricted access (UMinho)
Appears in Collections:NIPE - Artigos em Revistas de Circulação Internacional com Arbitragem Científica

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