Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa

Direct Democracy and Local Public Goods: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Indonesia

  • BENJAMIN A. OLKEN (a1)
Abstract

This article presents an experiment in which 49 Indonesian villages were randomly assigned to choose development projects through either representative-based meetings or direct election-based plebiscites. Plebiscites resulted in dramatically higher satisfaction among villagers, increased knowledge about the project, greater perceived benefits, and higher reported willingness to contribute. Changing the political mechanism had much smaller effects on the actual projects selected, with some evidence that plebiscites resulted in projects chosen by women being located in poorer areas. The results suggest that direct participation in political decision making can substantially increase satisfaction and legitimacy.

Copyright
Corresponding author
Benjamin A. Olken is Associate Professor, Department of Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 50 Memorial Drive E52-252A, Cambridge, MA, 02142 (bolken@mit.edu).
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

E. A. Lind , and T. R. Tyler . 1988. The Social Psychology of Procedural Justice. New York: Plenum Press.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

American Political Science Review
  • ISSN: 0003-0554
  • EISSN: 1537-5943
  • URL: /core/journals/american-political-science-review
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Altmetric attention score