One Villager, One Vote
Direct participation by African villagers proves that process matters, even when outcomes don't change.
Increasingly in the developing world, when governments make local policy they are listening to local voices. But whose voices, exactly, get heard? Concerned that elites in Indonesia dominated decision making at the local level, Benjamin Olken, a development economist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, designed a field experiment to compare the effects of alternative democratic institutions. Would direct elections result in fairer outcomes, and happier citizens, than the current...
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