Can Constituents Nudge Legislators? Evidence from a Bias Reduction Field Experiment

28 Pages Posted: 21 Aug 2019

See all articles by Michelangelo Landgrave

Michelangelo Landgrave

University of California, Riverside (UCR) - Department of Political Science

Date Written: August 18, 2019

Abstract

Nudges are interventions which alter the presentation of choices to improve decision-making. The nudge literature has thus far focused on improving decision-making among the general public. It is unclear if legislators, which are often modeled as being less immune to the biases which allow nudges to succeed, can be nudged. This manuscript shows that legislators can be nudged by their constituents to improve decision-making and therefore their ability to represent. I show this by fielding a bias reduction field experiment among US state legislative offices. To my knowledge this study is the first to succeed in nudging legislators with a low-cost intervention which ordinary constituents can use. This introduces the possibility for constituents to improve governance by nudging legislators to better decision-making.

Keywords: Discrimination, Legislative Audit, Audit Study, Latino Politics, Elite Behavior

Suggested Citation

Landgrave, Michelangelo, Can Constituents Nudge Legislators? Evidence from a Bias Reduction Field Experiment (August 18, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3439017 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3439017

Michelangelo Landgrave (Contact Author)

University of California, Riverside (UCR) - Department of Political Science ( email )

Riverside, CA 92521
United States

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