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Political Competition and Pork-Barrel Politics in the Allocation of Public Investment in Mexico


This paper examines theeffect of political competition in localelections in regional allocation of publicinvestment. The study employs data onMexican elections covering the period 1990–95, characterisedby an increase in electoral competition and coupled withincreasing demands for decentralisationthroughout the states. Empirical evidencesupports the hypothesis that regionalallocation of public investment by centralgovernment was driven by `politicalopportunism' and `local pork-barrelpolitics'. A positive relationship wasfound between the regional allocation ofpublic investment and support for thecentral ruling party. This might indicatethat local spending inefficiencies werepartially explained by the specific supportfor the incumbent party.

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Costa-i-Font, J., Rodriguez-Oreggia, E. & Lunapla, D. Political Competition and Pork-Barrel Politics in the Allocation of Public Investment in Mexico. Public Choice 116, 185–204 (2003). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1024263208736

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  • Positive Relationship
  • Public Finance
  • Public Investment
  • Political Competition
  • Electoral Competition