Table of Contents

A Handbook of Alternative Theories of Public Economics

A Handbook of Alternative Theories of Public Economics

Elgar original reference

Edited by Francesco Forte, Ram Mudambi and Pietro Maria Navarra

This comprehensive and thought-provoking Handbook reviews public sector economics from pluralist perspectives that either complement or reach beyond mainstream views. The book takes a comprehensive interdisciplinary approach, drawing on economic elements in the fields of philosophy, sociology, psychology, history and law.

Chapter 7: Strategic voting and happiness

Francesca Acacia and Maria Cubel Sanchez

Subjects: economics and finance, austrian economics, history of economic thought, public choice theory, public finance, public sector economics, politics and public policy, public choice

Extract

In this chapter we extend the research on happiness and spatial theory of voting by exploring whether strategic and sincere voting affect subjective well-being. We conduct the analysis with data on a large sample of individuals over 50 elections in 16 OECD countries. The results of the analysis show the existence of a negative effect of strategic voting on subjective well-being. In addition, the likelihood of being satisfied decreases when individuals vote strategically for a political party that wins the electoral race. Furthermore, when we analyse separately left-wing and right-wing voters, we find that the described effect holds for left-wing voters but not for right-wing voters. We discuss this evidence in the light of expressive voting theory (Hillman, 2010) and lack of empathy with future selves (Kahneman and Thaler, 1991). Our results are robust to different measures of strategic voting and subjective well-being.

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