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A Behavioral Theory of Elections$
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Jonathan Bendor, Daniel Diermeier, David A. Siegel, and Michael M. Ting

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780691135076

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691135076.001.0001

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Conclusions Bounded Rationality and Elections

Conclusions Bounded Rationality and Elections

(p.191) Chapter Eight Conclusions Bounded Rationality and Elections
A Behavioral Theory of Elections

Jonathan Bendor

Daniel Diermeier

David A. Siegel

Michael M. Ting

Princeton University Press

This chapter summarizes the book’s major findings regarding party location, turnout, voter choice, and voter participation. First, the simple party competition model suggests that in unidimensional policy spaces, satisficing by winners plus search by losers produces a string of governmental policies that converges to the median voter’s ideal point when citizens always vote for the party that will better serve their interests. Second, turnout responds in intuitive ways to changes in parameter values. Average participation is higher the further apart the parties, in both two-component models with fixed platforms and in the simple turnout model. Third, voters learn to support parties that better serve their interests. Fourth, voter coordination is usually successful: the Condorcet loser is almost never selected. The behavioral theory of elections based on bounded rationality is formulated in the languages of dynamic systems and stochastic processes.

Keywords:   voter turnout, voter choice, voter participation, party competition, satisficing, voters, voter coordination, behavioral theory, elections, bounded rationality

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