Political Budget Cycles

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingEncyclopedia chapterResearchpeer-review

The political budget cycle—how elections affect government fiscal policy—is one of the most studied subjects in political economy and political science. The key theoretical question is whether incumbent governments can time or structure public finances in ways that improve their chances of reelection; the key empirical question is whether this in fact happens. The incentives of incumbents to engage in such electioneering are governed by political institutions, observability of political choices, and their consequences, as well as voter knowledge, and both theoretical and empirical studies on political budget cycles have recently focused on conditions under which such cycles are likely to obtain. Much recent research focuses on subnational settings, allowing comparisons of governments in similar institutional environments, and a consensus on the presences of cycles in public finances—and in the reporting of public finances—is beginning to emerge.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOxford Research Encyclopedia of Politics
Place of PublicationOxford
PublisherOxford University Press
Publication date2017
Publication statusPublished - 2017
SeriesOxford Research Encyclopedia

Bibliographical note

Online publication date Apr. 2017

    Research areas

  • Faculty of Social Sciences - political budget cycles, political business cycles, elections, political economy, fiscal policy

ID: 177380957