Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/66212
Authors: 
Geys, Benny
Vermeir, Jan
Year of Publication: 
2012
Series/Report no.: 
WZB Discussion Paper SP II 2012-107
Abstract: 
In federal countries, competence for policy matters is often shared between various levels of government. As only overall outcomes are observed, this might blur accountability by decreasing voters' ability to infer information about the performance of their leaders. In this article, we analyse how party cues (i.e., politicians' party membership acting as a cue towards their characteristics) affect voters' incomplete information about politicians in a federal setting. We first of all show that party cues allow indirect inference regarding politicians using observed policy outcomes, alleviating the accountability problem. Empirical evidence from US presidential election results across all 50 US states over the period 1972-2008 provides support for this proposition. Yet, while the availability of party cues in a federal setting increases the national incumbents' effort in some cases, it may reduce effort particularly when the regional incumbent if of a different party.
Subjects: 
federalism
accountability
multilevel governance
party cues
JEL: 
D72
H30
H77
Document Type: 
Working Paper

Files in This Item:
File
Size
463.28 kB





Items in EconStor are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.