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La Chaire EPPP » Elections and project delivery in public work procurement: A red ribbon effect?

Elections and project delivery in public work procurement: A red ribbon effect?

Numéro: 2014-11

Eshien Chong, Michael Klien et John MooreElections and project delivery in public work procurement: A red ribbon effect? 

Abstract: In this paper, we investigate the electoral cycle empirically using data on public work procurement in 1,634 French municipalities between 2005 and 2007. Using a difference-in-difference approach, we compare public work procurement of municipalities whose mayor was a candidate in the 2007 legislative elections with those of municipalities whose mayor did not run. We find that public work contracts are more likely to end in the years preceding the legislative election in municipalities whose mayor ran in the election. We interpret these observations as indications that electoral considerations influence the conduct of public procurement. In particular, our results suggest that mayors running for legislative elections in France attempted to enhance their election perspective by influencing the timing of project delivery in public work procurement. We consider several potential mechanisms to explain our results.

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