The Impact of Procedural Information Costs on Voting: Evidence from a Natural Experiment in Chile

Original Paper

Abstract

This paper uses a natural experiment to identify the effect of a procedural information cost on the electoral registration of young first-time voters. We exploit the fact that information about when the minimum age eligibility requirement is due, either at registration or election-day, is only meaningful for those turning 18 after registration closing day. Using a national dataset on Chilean registration over four elections, we provide evidence of a sharp discontinuity in the registration rate of those youngsters turning 18 at closing date. The effect is both sizable and robust, persists over time, and is similar across income groups.

Keywords

Registration costs Information acquisition Political participation Voting habits 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Economic DepartmentUniversidad Diego PortalesSantiagoChile
  2. 2.Banco Central de ChileSantiagoChile

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