Public Choice

, Volume 156, Issue 3, pp 677-702

First online:

Running for office again: evidence from Portuguese municipal elections

  • Vítor CastroAffiliated withFaculty of Economics, University of Coimbra and NIPE Email author 
  • , Rodrigo MartinsAffiliated withFaculty of Economics, University of Coimbra and GEMF

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Using a data set that covers all Portuguese mainland municipalities for the period 1979–2005, this study performs an empirical analysis of the economic determinants of mayors’ decisions to run for another term in office. The literature on the subject is mainly centered on the United States and, as far as we know, there are no papers addressing the economic factors influencing those choices.

Probit panel estimations show that local economic conditions matter more than the national or regional economic environment. The results also confirm that political variables are important and that they influence the likelihood of seeking reelection in much the same way as they affect vote and popularity functions.


Local elections Reelection Mayor Economic conditions Probit model

JEL Classification

D72 H79 C35