Monday, September 17, 2018 at 11:40am to 1:10pm
Ives Hall, 115
B07 Tower Rd, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA
Angela Cools (Cornell University)
Labor Market Conditions and Civic Participation of Working-Age Individuals
Abstract: I examine the link between prime-age individuals' economic conditions and two measures of civic participation: voter turnout and volunteering with civic and political organizations. To establish causality, I leverage a Bartik-style strategy that uses variation in industry and occupation composition across demographic groups and states to predict changes in demand for employment. Focusing first on voting, I find that a one standard deviation increase in labor demand is associated with a 1-1.5 percentage point increase in turnout for prime-age individuals. The impact of labor demand on voting does not differ significantly by gender. I then turn to mechanisms, and find that falling labor demand decreases individuals' reported levels of civic duty and individual efficacy. Finally, I also find suggestive evidence that, for men, decreased labor demand is associated with lower rates of volunteering with civic and political organizations. A videoconferencing connection is available for those who cannot make it to 115 Ives. Please contact Heather LaCombe by the Friday before the workshop for more details.