Weiteres Forschungsprojekt
Innovation and Entrepreneurship Research

Structural Shocks and Political Participation in the U.S.

How do recent structural shifts in the economy, driven by automation and import competition, affect political participation in democracies? This study examines the local impact of industrial robots and rising imports from China on voter turnout in U.S. federal elections. Using data for over 3,200 U.S. counties from 2000 to 2016, we provide compelling evidence that political participation declines in counties with greater exposure to industrial robots. Although the negative income effect of both shocks is comparable, we find that the exposure to rising import competition does not reduce voter turnout. A survey experiment reveals that divergent beliefs about the effectiveness of government intervention drive this contrast. Our study highlights the role of beliefs in the political economy of technological change.


Beteiligte Forschende

Dr. Marina Chugunova,
Klaus Keller, M.A.,
Prof. Sampsa Samila, Ph.D. (IESE Business School, University of Navarra)