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The incumbency effects of signalling

Caselli, Francesco, Cunningham, Tom, Morelli, Massimo and de Barreda, Inés Moreno (2014) The incumbency effects of signalling. Economica, 81 (323). pp. 397-418. ISSN 0013-0427

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Identification Number: 10.1111/ecca.12060


Much literature on political behaviour treats politicians as motivated by re-election, choosing actions to signal their types to voters. We identify a novel implication of incumbent signalling. Because incumbents only care about clearing a re-election hurdle, signals will tend to cluster just above the threshold needed for re-election. This generates a skew distribution of signals leading to an incumbency advantage in the probability of election. We also solve for the optimal threshold when voters have the ability to commit.

Item Type: Article
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Additional Information: © 2013 The London School of Economics and Political Science
Divisions: Economics
Centre for Economic Performance
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Date Deposited: 02 Dec 2013 08:49
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2021 02:08

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