Alaitz Artabe

Individuals' Choices: Strategic Voting and Degree Election.
Supervisors: Javier Gardeazabal and Annick Laruelle

Committee Members

  • Federico Valenciano (Chairman), University of the Basque Country
  • Elena del Rey Canteli, Universitat de Girona
  • Beatriz Gonzalez Lopez-Valcarcel, Universidad Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
  • Thomas Gschwend, University of Mannheim
  • Stefan Napel, University of Bayreuth

European Thesis


In this thesis, we analyze and model the behavior and the elections of individuals in three different choice situations, one for each chapter.

In the first chapter, we analyze different issues related to quaternary voting rules. We study the relation between individuals’ preferences and actions and we demonstrate that individuals may have incentives to behave strategically. This distinction permits the difference between success and decisiveness to be stressed again.

In the second chapter, we propose a new methodology to estimate the random utility model for voters, when strategic voters are also in the sample. We illustrate our methodology using post-electoral data from the 2008 Spanish General Elections. It is concluded that 2.19 per cent of individuals voted strategically.

In the third chapter, we propose a new method to estimate a discrete choice model avoiding the identification problem that appears when utility depends on individual characteristics and degree attributes.  We use our methodology to model the college degree demand. We illustrate the methodology using pre-enrollment data from the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU) in 2009. We conclude that degree demand is influenced by individuals’ characteristics, such as, gender, the grades in Basque and Mathematics, the distance from the  place of residence to the place of study, and also by alternative  attributes, such as, expected wage and the time needed to find a job.


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