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Direct democracy and intergenerational conflicts in ageing societies

Ahlfeldt, Gabriel M. ORCID: 0000-0001-5664-3230, Maenning, Wolfgang and Steenbeck, Malte (2019) Direct democracy and intergenerational conflicts in ageing societies. Journal of Regional Science, 60 (1). pp. 129-155. ISSN 0022-4146

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Identification Number: 10.1111/jors.12448


To evaluate the potential effects of population ageing on the outcomes of direct democracy, we analyze the effect of age on voting decisions in public referendums. In a case study of the Stuttgart 21 referendum on one of the largest infrastructure projects in Germany, we find that support for the project decreased significantly in age. A quan‐ titative review of the relevant literature affirms that similar lifecycle patterns appear to be the norm in referendums on projects that require initial expenditures and pay off in the long run. Population ageing, thus, presents a potential threat to investment‐like reform projects.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2019 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Divisions: Geography & Environment
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
JEL classification: D - Microeconomics > D6 - Welfare Economics > D61 - Allocative Efficiency; Cost-Benefit Analysis
D - Microeconomics > D6 - Welfare Economics > D62 - Externalities
H - Public Economics > H4 - Publicly Provided Goods > H41 - Public Goods
H - Public Economics > H7 - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations > H71 - State and Local Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue
L - Industrial Organization > L8 - Industry Studies: Services > L83 - Sports; Gambling; Recreation; Tourism
I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I1 - Health > I18 - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
R - Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics > R4 - Transportation Systems > R41 - Transportation: Demand, Supply, and Congestion; Safety and Accidents; Transportation Noise
R - Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics > R5 - Regional Government Analysis > R58 - Regional Development Policy
Date Deposited: 06 Mar 2019 12:45
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 02:40

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