Brief 43: The Effect of Politicians’ Positions on Constituent Opinion in the United States

To test the ways in which politicians influence public opinion, the authors conduct two studies. The structures of the two studies are nearly identical. The authors partner with state legislators in a Midwestern state and identify contentious policy positions that they hold (support for tax increases or support for undocumented immigrants, for example). Next, they conduct interviews with a randomly selected sample of constituents to identify their opinions on these issues.

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Brief 38: Diminishing the Effectiveness of Vote-Buying Through Voter Education

In the lead-up to the 2014 elections, Green and Vasudevan hired an Indian agency to script and record advertisements to discourage voting for vote-buying parties. The advertisements were skits in which actors discussed why vote-buying politicians were untrustworthy and unlikely to make good on their promises. The 60-second spots were recorded in Hindi and four regional languages (Kannada, Marathi, Oriya, and Telugu). The authors chose 60 AIR stations covering 665 ACs in ten states.

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Brief 37: Voter and Candidate Response to Political Debates

Before the 2012 parliamentary elections, the research team identified 28 constituencies with relatively competitive elections (based on previous vote results, ethnic-partisan bias, and the whether the seat had recently changed parties). From these 28, 14 were randomly selected, and a civil society group called Search for Common Ground (SFCG) invited candidates from the three major parties to participate in debates. First, candidates answered some getting-to-know-you questions. Then, they answered questions on a variety of national policy issues.
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Brief 03: Democratic Governance in Afghanistan

An experimental design was used in which the NSP program was partially extended to ten non-NSP districts in 2007; in each of these, 50 villages were selected and then randomly assigned to take part in NSP or not. Selected villages were grouped into matched pairs based on background characteristics and a requirement that they not be within 1km of each other; one unit in each pair was then randomly assigned to treatment.

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