Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Voter apathy and what to do about it

Rahul Basu's friend Arunava Sen (from ISI Delhi) offers a game theoretic argument for what may work.

A better strategy is to emphasize that voting is duty just like paying taxes and not throwing garbage into your street. The effect of this is to add a positive constant K on the left hand side of the equilibrium equation. Voters get this benefit independently of the outcome of the vote - you can think of this as the "warm glow" you get when they put that ink on your index finger. It is quite easy to verify that if K is large enough, you get a corner solution where all voters irrespective of their voting costs, vote.

Here's a set of top ten lists of why Delhi voted but (South) Mumbai didn't.


  1. Yayaver said...

    Check Speech addressed by Professor Yash Pal,Chancellor, Jawaharlal Nehru University at Indian academy of social sciences October 5, 2007.