Patience as a Political Virtue: Delayed Gratification and Turnout

Patience as a Political Virtue: Delayed Gratification and Turnout A number of scholars have demonstrated that voter turnout is influenced by the costs of processing information and going to the polls, and the policy benefits associated with the outcome of the election. However, no one has yet noted that the costs of voting are paid on or before Election Day, while policy benefits may not materialize until several days, months, or even years later. Since the costs of voting must be borne before the benefits are realized, people who are more patient should be more willing to vote. We use a “choice game” from experimental economics to estimate individual discount factors which are used to measure patience. We then show that patience significantly increases voter turnout. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Political Behavior Springer Journals

Patience as a Political Virtue: Delayed Gratification and Turnout

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2006 by Springer Science+Business Media, Inc.
Subject
Political Science and International Relations; Political Science; Sociology, general
ISSN
0190-9320
eISSN
1573-6687
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11109-006-9004-7
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

A number of scholars have demonstrated that voter turnout is influenced by the costs of processing information and going to the polls, and the policy benefits associated with the outcome of the election. However, no one has yet noted that the costs of voting are paid on or before Election Day, while policy benefits may not materialize until several days, months, or even years later. Since the costs of voting must be borne before the benefits are realized, people who are more patient should be more willing to vote. We use a “choice game” from experimental economics to estimate individual discount factors which are used to measure patience. We then show that patience significantly increases voter turnout.

Journal

Political BehaviorSpringer Journals

Published: Jul 8, 2006

References

  • Inherent association between academic delay of gratification, future time perspective, and self-regulated learning
    Bembenutty, H.; Karabenick, S. A.
  • Can we talk? Self-presentation and the survey response
    Berinsky, A. J.
  • The effects of financial incentives in experiments: A review and capital-labor-production framework
    Camerer, C. F.; Hogarth, R. M.

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