Preference Identification and Political Participation in Alternative Voting Systems

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Suggs, Emilia Jane
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Middle Tennessee State University
The purpose of this dissertation is to explore how modifying the structure of voting systems and procedures can identify and change people’s political behavior. By changing the voting rules or election structures faced by individual political agents, we ultimately change the incentive structures that underlie their decision making and should expect changes in political outcomes. The study examines two types of institutional changes and their associated effects on the behavior of political agents. The first study examines the formation of alternative voting rules and their use as a measure of voter preferences. The study defines the rules of a two-stage multivoting system and evaluates the performance of this system against traditional voting mechanism using experimental data gathered from college students. In the second part, the study examines the political entry decisions of political party candidates in state assembly general elections. Two approaches to political entry are presented: the first assumes that the probability of observing a candidate of a specific political party is dependent upon characteristics about a district’s election and demographic characteristics, while the other assumes candidates make election choices based on the expected payoff they receive by participating in elections.
Alternative voting systems, Political competition, Preference intensities, State assembly elections, Two-stage multivoting, Economic theory, Political science