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The perils of voter mobilization

Author: Benjamin Marx; Vincent Pons; Tavneet Suri; National Bureau of Economic Research,
Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : National Bureau of Economic Research, 2017.
Series: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research), no. 23946.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Voter mobilization campaigns face trade-offs in young democracies. In a large-scale experiment implemented in 2013 with the Kenyan Electoral Commission (IEBC), text messages intended to mobilize voters boosted participation but also decreased trust in electoral institutions after the election, a decrease that was stronger in areas that experienced election-related violence, and for individuals on the losing side of  Read more...
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Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Benjamin Marx; Vincent Pons; Tavneet Suri; National Bureau of Economic Research,
OCLC Number: 1007317578
Notes: "October 2017"
Description: 1 online resource (25 pages, 37 unnumbered pages, 9 pages) : illustrations, map.
Series Title: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research), no. 23946.
Responsibility: Benjamin Marx, Vincent Pons, Tavneet Suri.

Abstract:

Voter mobilization campaigns face trade-offs in young democracies. In a large-scale experiment implemented in 2013 with the Kenyan Electoral Commission (IEBC), text messages intended to mobilize voters boosted participation but also decreased trust in electoral institutions after the election, a decrease that was stronger in areas that experienced election-related violence, and for individuals on the losing side of the election. The mobilization backfired because the IEBC promised an electronic voting system that failed, resulting in manual voting and tallying delays. Using a simple model, we show signaling high institutional capacity via a mobilization campaign can negatively affect beliefs about the fairness of the election.

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