Aligning with one's own: private voting and public outcomes in elections in rural India

Vol: 
2011/09
Author name: 
Raghbendra Jha
Hari K. Nagarajan
Kailash C. Pradhan
Year: 
2011
Abstract: 

This paper has the objective of showing that identity based voting will lead to improvements in household welfare through increased access to welfare programs. Using newly available data from rural India, we establish that identity based voting will lead to enhanced participation in welfare programs and increased consumption growth. We also show that consumption growth is retarded if households do not engage in identity based voting. Using 3 stage least squares, we are able to show that identity based voting results from the externalities derived from membership in social and information networks, and such voting by enhancing participation in welfare programs leads to significant increases in household consumption growth.

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