Who Runs? Honesty and Self-Selection in Politics

Sebastian Fehrler, Urs Fischbacher, Maik Schneider

Research output: Working paper

Abstract

We examine the incentives to self-select into politics and how they depend on the
transparency of the entry process. To this end, we set up a two-stage political competition model and test its key mechanisms in the lab. At the entry stage, potential candidates compete in a contest to become their party’s nominee. At the election stage, the nominated candidates campaign by making non-binding promises to voters. Confirming the model’s key predictions, we find in the experiment that dishonest people over-proportionally self-select into the political race; and that this adverse selection effect can be prevented if the entry stage is made transparent to voters.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationBonn, Germany
PublisherIZA
Number of pages48
VolumeDiscussion Paper No. 10258
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2016

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Fehrler, S., Fischbacher, U., & Schneider, M. (2016). Who Runs? Honesty and Self-Selection in Politics. Bonn, Germany: IZA.