Information and strategic voting
Title: Information and strategic voting
Citation: Experimental Economics, 2015, OnlineFirst
ISSN: 1386-4157; 1573-6938
We theoretically and experimentally study voter behavior in a setting characterized by plurality rule and mandatory voting. Voters choose from three options. We are interested in the occurrence of strategic voting in an environment where Condorcet cycles may occur and focus on how information about the preference distribution affects strategic behavior. We also vary the relative importance of the second preferred option. Quantal response equilibrium analysis is used to analyze the game and derive predictions. Our results indeed show that strategic voting arises. Its extent depends on (i) information availability; (ii) the relative importance of the intermediate candidate; (iii) the electorate’s relative support for one’s preferred candidate; (iv) the relative position of the plurality-supported candidate in one’s preference ordering. Our results show that information serves as a coordination device where strategic voting does not harm the plurality-preferred candidate’s chances of winning.
Subject: Voting behavior; Experimental economics; Quantal response equilibrium
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