SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

In this article we explore the ways in which incentives to cultivate a personal vote affect the efficiency of education spending in developing democracies. We argue that where the electoral system provides incentives for political particularism, resources are allocated less efficiently and the effect of increased spending on literacy is diminished. We test our hypotheses using data on education spending and performance in over 40 developing democracies since 1980. We find that though personal vote systems spend just as much on education as party vote systems, particularism in personal vote systems dampens the marginal effect of increased education spending on illiteracy and at its highest levels, incentives to cultivate a personal vote completely undermine the positive effects of increased education spending on literacy.