Fertilizer and Votes: Does Strategic Economic Policy Explain the 2009 Malawi Election?

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Title: Fertilizer and Votes: Does Strategic Economic Policy Explain the 2009 Malawi Election?
Authors: Brazys, Samuel
Heaney, Peter
Walsh, Patrick P.
Permanent link: http://hdl.handle.net/10197/6504
Date: Sep-2015
Abstract: Ethno-regional voting cleavages have featured in a number of sub-Saharan African states during the third wave of democratization. While these voting patterns are well studied, there have been few attempts to understand if pan-ethno-regional coalition building based on targeted economic policies can be employed to secure national electoral coalitions. We examine the 2009 Malawian parliamentary elections where a newly-formed national party used its incumbent position to promote an economic policy based on food security in order to overcome traditional ethno-regional voting patterns. After presenting a formal model of an optimal allocation of an economic resource to induce vote-switching, we use district-level data in a system of equations approach finding that this strategic allocation did indeed contribute to the nation-wide electoral victory.
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: Elsevier
Journal: Electoral Studies
Volume: 39
Start page: 39
End page: 55
Keywords: ElectionsAfricaIdentity politicsEthno-regionalClientelismPrebendalism
DOI: 10.1016/j.electstud.2015.03.007
Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
Appears in Collections:Politics and International Relations Research Collection
Geary Institute Research Collection

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