Quarterly Journal of Political Science > Vol 10 > Issue 3

Does Polarisation of Opinions Lead to Polarisation of Platforms? The Case of Correlation Neglect

Gilat Levy, London School of Economics, UK, g.levy@lse.ac.uk Ronny Razin, London School of Economics, UK, r.razin@lse.ac.uk
 
Suggested Citation
Gilat Levy and Ronny Razin (2015), "Does Polarisation of Opinions Lead to Polarisation of Platforms? The Case of Correlation Neglect", Quarterly Journal of Political Science: Vol. 10: No. 3, pp 321-355. http://dx.doi.org/10.1561/100.00015010

Published: 17 Sep 2015
© 2015 G. Levy and R. Razin
 
Subjects
Political economy,  Elections: Voting behavior,  Game theory
 

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In this article:
1. The Model
2. Voters' Behaviour
3. Polarisation and Correlation Neglect
4. Extension: Endogenous Levels of Correlation
5. Discussion: Welfare Implications
6. Conclusion
A. Appendix
References

Abstract

In this paper, we question the common wisdom that more polarised voters' opinions imply larger policy polarisation. We analyse a voting model in which the source of the polarisation in voters' opinions is correlation neglect, that is, voters neglect the correlation in their information sources. Our main result shows that such polarisation in opinions does not necessarily translate to policy polarisation; when the electoral system is not too competitive (that is, when there is some aggregate noise in the election's outcome), then voters with correlation neglect may induce lower levels of policy polarisation compared with rational electorates.

DOI:10.1561/100.00015010