When does regression discontinuity design work? Evidence from random election outcomes
Hyytinen, A., Meriläinen, J., Saarimaa, T., Toivanen, O., & Tukiainen, J. (2018). When does regression discontinuity design work? Evidence from random election outcomes. Quantitative Economics, 9(2), 1019-1051. https://doi.org/10.3982/QE864
Published inQuantitative Economics
© 2018 The Authors
We use elections data in which a large number of ties in vote counts betweencandidates are resolved via a lottery to study the personal incumbency advantage. We benchmark non-experimental regression discontinuity design (RDD) estimates against the estimate produced by this experiment that takes place exactlyat the cutoff. The experimental estimate suggests that there is no personal incumbency advantage. In contrast, conventional local polynomial RDD estimates suggest a moderate and statistically significant effect. Bias-corrected RDD estimatesthat apply robust inference are, however, in line with the experimental estimate.Therefore, state-of-the-art implementation of RDD can meet the replication standard in the context of close elections.
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