Reducing the Detrimental Effect of Identity Voting: An Experiment on Intergroup Coordination in China

44 Pages Posted: 11 Jan 2019

See all articles by Rebecca Morton

Rebecca Morton

New York University (NYU) - Wilf Family Department of Politics

Kai Ou

Florida State University

Xiangdong Qin

Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) - Antai College of Economics and Management

Date Written: January 5, 2019

Abstract

A frequently mentioned impediment to intergroup coordination are pre-existing and long-standing divisions between voters along social and ethnic lines. While there are compelling discussions of the effects of identities on voting - focusing on either minimal group identities or naturally occurring identities - scholarly understanding of how to reduce the detrimental effect of identity voting remains limited. In this study, we compare the differential effects of payoff relevant minimal group identities and ethnic identities on intergroup coordination, and explore the effectiveness of repetition and communication on intergroup cooperation. We present findings from a series of experiments conducted in China with Tibetan and Han Chinese, with variations in the degree of identity salience and focality of the choices. We find that the naturally occurring ethnicities are indeed more salient than the minimal group identities. To a large extent, repetition and communication work to reduce the identity effects on voting, even when these effects are strongly reinforced by other identities. We find that conflicting multiple identities appear to be the most difficult to overcome in voter coordination games, but over time, we see that subjects achieve greater coordination through communication.

Keywords: Identities, Communication, Repetition, Other-Regarding Choices, Tibetan, Intergroup Coordination, Lab-in-the-Field Experiment

JEL Classification: C9, D6, D7, Z1

Suggested Citation

Morton, Rebecca and Ou, Kai and Qin, Xiangdong, Reducing the Detrimental Effect of Identity Voting: An Experiment on Intergroup Coordination in China (January 5, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3312294 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3312294

Rebecca Morton

New York University (NYU) - Wilf Family Department of Politics ( email )

715 Broadway
New York, NY 10003
United States
212-998-3706 (Phone)

Kai Ou (Contact Author)

Florida State University ( email )

Tallahasse, FL 32306
United States

Xiangdong Qin

Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) - Antai College of Economics and Management ( email )

No.535 Fahuazhen Road
Shanghai Jiao Tong University
Shanghai, Shanghai 200052
China

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
21
Abstract Views
308
PlumX Metrics