Shades of Brown and Green: Party Effects in Proportional Election Systems

Reprint No. 2014:45

Author(s): Olle FolkeYear: 2014 Title: Journal of the European Economic Association Volume (No.): 12 (5) Pages: 1361–1395
Online article (restrictions may apply)

In proportional representation (PR) systems, political power is typically shared across several political parties. Many parties are small and focused on specific policies, such as environmental policy and immigration. Do these small parties matter for policy? I provide the first systematic evidence for this by developing the first regression discontinuity design tailored specifically for PR systems. With this method, which can be applied in all countries with PR systems, I estimate the causal effect of party representation on immigration policy, environmental policy and tax policy using data on Swedish municipalities. The results show that party representation has a large effect on the first two policies, but not on the tax policy.

Folke, Olle (2014), "Shades of Brown and Green: Party Effects in Proportional Election Systems". Journal of the European Economic Association 12(5), 1361–1395.

Olle Folke


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In this book Andreas Bergh, Therese Nilsson, IFN and Lund University, and Daniel Waldenström, IFN and Paris School of Economics, France, review the latest research on the relationship between inequality and health. What does inequality mean for our health? Does increasing income inequality affect outcomes such as obesity, life expectancy and subjective well-being?


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