Conditional cash transfers, political participation and voting behavior

Available from: 
October 2013
Paper author(s): 
Javier Baez (World Bank)
Adriana Camacho (Universidad de los Andes)
Emily Conover (Hamilton College)
Román A. Zárate (Universidad de los Andes)
Politics and Economy
Fiscal Policy - Public and Welfare Economics

This paper estimates the effect of enrollment in a large scale anti-poverty program in Colombia on intent to vote, turnout and electoral choice. For identification we use discontinuities in program eligibility and variation in program enrollment across voting booths. We find that in the 2010 presidential elections women who were direct recipients of the cash transfer were more likely to register to vote (1.8-2.9 pp). Among women, a standard deviation increase in the proportion of beneficiaries at the voting booth results in approximately a 2 pp increase in the probability of casting a ballot and a 1 pp of voting for the incumbent party under which the program was expanded. The effects are less robust and smaller in magnitude for men. Our results show that voters respond to targeted transfers, that these transfers can foster support for incumbents, and that it matters who in the household receives the money.


Go bact to Politics and Economy

Research section: 
Lacea 2013 annual meeting
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