This paper studies the effect of different ballot structures in proportional representation systems on the educational attainment of elected politicians as a proxy for their ‘‘ability’’. By exploiting the Italian electoral reform that switched from open to blocked lists of candidates, the difference-in-differences analysis shows that the reform lowered the educational attainment of national politicians compared to the counterfactual (regional politicians). The dynamic impact of the reform is persistent over time, and it is robust to several concerns. The estimates account for the changes in the party system due to the ‘‘Clean hands’’ judicial inquiry against political corruption that began in 1992. The voters’ choice of better politicians than political parties seems to be the most likely mechanism behind the results.

Ballot structure and political selection. Evidence from changes in electoral rules

Erasmo Papagni
Primo
Writing – Original Draft Preparation
;
Maria Rosaria Alfano
Ultimo
Data Curation
2022

Abstract

This paper studies the effect of different ballot structures in proportional representation systems on the educational attainment of elected politicians as a proxy for their ‘‘ability’’. By exploiting the Italian electoral reform that switched from open to blocked lists of candidates, the difference-in-differences analysis shows that the reform lowered the educational attainment of national politicians compared to the counterfactual (regional politicians). The dynamic impact of the reform is persistent over time, and it is robust to several concerns. The estimates account for the changes in the party system due to the ‘‘Clean hands’’ judicial inquiry against political corruption that began in 1992. The voters’ choice of better politicians than political parties seems to be the most likely mechanism behind the results.
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
JCOMPEC2022_proofs.pdf

solo utenti autorizzati

Tipologia: Documento in Pre-print
Licenza: Copyright dell'editore
Dimensione 911.41 kB
Formato Adobe PDF
911.41 kB Adobe PDF   Visualizza/Apri   Richiedi una copia

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11588/905096
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus ND
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? ND
social impact