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Can low-cost, scalable, online interventions increase youth informed political participation in electoral authoritarian contexts?

Romain Ferrali, Guy Grossman and Horacio Larreguy
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Guy Grossman: University of Pennsylvania

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Abstract: Young citizens vote at relatively low rates, which contributes to political parties de-prioritizing youth preferences. We analyze the effects of low-cost online interventions in encouraging young Moroccans to cast an informed vote in the 2021 elections. These interventions aim to reduce participation costs by providing information about the registration process and by highlighting the election's stakes and the distance between respondents' preferences and party platforms. Contrary to preregistered expectations, the interventions did not increase average turnout, yet exploratory analysis shows that the interventions designed to increase benefits did increase the turnout intention of uncertain baseline voters. Moreover, information about parties' platforms increased support for the party closest to the respondents' preferences, leading to better-informed voting. Results are consistent with motivated reasoning, which is surprising in a context with weak party institutionalization.

Date: 2023-06
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cdm, nep-ger and nep-pol
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Published in Science Advances , 2023, 9 (26), pp.eadf1222. ⟨10.1126/sciadv.adf1222⟩

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DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.adf1222

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