A prospect-theory model of voter turnout

Oliver Herrmann*, Richard Jong A Pin, Lambert Schoonbeek

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We incorporate prospect-theory preferences in a game-theoretic model to study voter turnout. We show that voter turnout is heavily affected by agents having subjective reference points with respect to the vote or abstain decision and their subjective probability weighting in the decision-making process. Using empirically based parameter values, we show that our model has lower prediction error than other game-theoretic models with standard expected-utility preferences. We also find that our model maintains desirable comparative statics effects and leads to higher turnout predictions in larger electorates.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)362-373
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Economic Behavior & Organization
Volume168
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec-2019

Keywords

  • Voting behavior
  • Downsian paradox
  • Prospect-theory preferences
  • LOSS AVERSION
  • PARTICIPATION
  • PARADOX
  • CHOICE
  • DECISION
  • CALCULUS
  • UTILITY

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