Does campaign spending affect electoral outcomes?

Avi Ben-Bassat, Momi Dahan, Esteban F. Klor*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


This study investigates the effect of candidates' expenditure on elections' results focusing on run-off elections' data. Our analysis, based on all run-off municipal elections in Israel between 1993 and 2008, shows that candidates' share of the vote is not substantially affected by their campaign spending. This outcome contradicts recent results showing that, in a developing country where voting is compulsory, campaign expenditures have a significant effect on vote shares. Yet, it is in line with the evidence of earlier studies based on developed countries showing that the effect of campaign spending is limited. This leads us to suggest that campaign spending may be effective in developing countries with consolidating democracies because compulsory voting forces the relative poor population to turn out and vote, and this population is relatively more impressionable by campaign spending on media advertisements.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)102-114
Number of pages13
JournalElectoral Studies
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier Ltd.


  • Campaign spending
  • Electoral outcomes
  • Quasi-natural experiment


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