19 October 2009
Please join us this Wednesday October 21st when we will have a change in the schedule. We are happy to have Andy Eggers (Department of Government) presenting a talk titled "Electoral Rules, Opposition Scrutiny, and Policy Moderation in French Municipalities: An Application of the Regression Discontinuity Design." Andy has provided the following abstract for his talk:
Regression discontinuity design (RDD) is a powerful and increasingly popular approach to causal inference that can be applied when treatment is assigned deterministically based on a continuous covariate. In this talk, I will present an application of RDD from French municipalities, where the system of electing the municipal council depends on whether the city's population is above or below 3500. First I show that cities above the population cutoff have fewer uncontested elections and more opposition representation on municipal councils, consistent with expectations. I then trace the effect of these political changes -- which amount to a heightening of the scrutiny imposed on the mayor -- on policy outcomes, providing evidence that more opposition scrutiny leads to more moderate policy.
The Applied Statistics workshop meets each Wednesday in room K-354, CGIS-Knafel (1737 Cambridge St). We start at 12 noon with a light lunch, with presentations beginning around 12:15 and we usually wrap up around 1:30 pm. We hope you can make it.