Isabela Mares

Isabela Mares
Yale University | YU · Department of Political Science

Doctor of Philosophy, Harvard University

About

64
Publications
20,129
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
1,359
Citations
Introduction
Isabela Mares is the Arnold Wolfers Professor of Political Science at Yale University. She is currently working on electoral intimidation and corruption in both contemporary and historical settings. Her most recent books are Conditionality and Coercion: Electoral Clientelism in Eastern Europe (2019 Oxford University Press) and From Open Secrets to Secret Voting: Democratic Voting Autonomy and Electoral Reform (Cambridge University Press 2015)
Additional affiliations
July 2018 - present
Yale University
Position
  • Professor
August 2007 - June 2018
Columbia University
Position
  • Professor (Full)
November 2006 - October 2007
Stanford University
Position
  • Professor
Education
September 1992 - July 1999
Harvard University
Field of study
  • Political Science

Publications

Publications (64)
Article
Full-text available
The income tax is a central pillar of the modern fiscal state because of its revenue- raising capacity and administrative sophistication. Existing accounts point to interstate war and class conflict as key drivers of modern fiscal breakthroughs, but we evaluate a third explanation for the origins of fiscal capacity that highlights the importance of...
Chapter
Chapter 4 examines clientelistic strategies where political brokers deploy state resources—privileged access to policy resources or administrative favors—as positive promises of future access to incentivize electoral choices of voters. Drawing on ethnographic research, it examines the strategies by which these brokers (mayors or employees in the lo...
Chapter
Chapter 2 presents the theoretical framework of the analysis. Definitional and conceptual issues related to the study of electoral clientelism are clarified, and a classification of clientelistic strategies that differentiates among strategies based on public versus private resources, and those structured as positive promises versus negative threat...
Chapter
Vote buying, the offer of particularistic rewards to voters in exchange for electoral support at the ballot box, is the form of clientelism that has been analyzed most extensively in previous studies. Chapter 7 documents the presence of this clientelistic strategy in East European elections. It documents important differences between vote buying an...
Chapter
Full-text available
Chapter 6 turns to the analysis of clientelistic strategies premised on economic coercion. In urban settings, the main brokers involved in coercive strategies are employers who threaten employees with a reduction in their wages or with economic layoffs. In rural settings, the main economic brokers are moneylenders, who threaten voters with the wors...
Chapter
This study examines clientelistic politics in two post-communist countries, Hungary and Romania. Chapter 3 presents descriptive information on the recent evolution of party systems in both countries and the changes in patterns of political competition in recent elections. It examines the most significant policies that provide opportunities for clie...
Book
In many recent democracies, candidates compete for office using illegal strategies to influence voters. In Hungary and Romania, local actors including mayors and bureaucrats offer access to social policy benefits to voters who offer to support their preferred candidates, and they threaten others with the loss of a range of policy and private benefi...
Chapter
Chapter 8 restates the results of the book and discusses the implications of its findings for ongoing scholarly and policy debate concerning the persistence of electoral clientelism in current democracies. First, the chapter shows that the authors’ account of electoral clientelism presents new micro-foundations for the understanding of the developm...
Chapter
Chapter 5 explores the use of non-programmatic strategies premised on welfare coercion. Drawing on ethnographic research, it documents the use of different coercive practices used by candidates in the region. “Blackmail” involves the initial toleration of some irregularities (such as non-payment of taxes), which are exploited at elections. Welfare...
Article
Full-text available
In many elections around the world, voters choose between politicians who differ not only in personal background and policy promises, but also in their history of dishonest electoral conduct. While recent literature has begun to investigate the conditions under which voters punish electoral malfeasance, we know relatively little about whether they...
Article
In elections around the world, candidates seek to influence voters' choices using a variety of intermediaries and by relying on either positive electoral inducements or coercive strategies. What explains candidates' choices among different forms of clientelism? When do candidates incentivize voters using positive inducements and when do they choose...
Article
Full-text available
In elections around the world, candidates seek to influence voters' choices using a variety of intermediaries and by relying on either positive electoral inducements or coercive strategies. What explains candidates' choices among different forms of clientelism? When do candidates incentivize voters using positive inducements and when do they choose...
Article
In many recent democracies, candidates seek to mobilize voters using a combination of clientelistic promises and coercive strategies.How pernicious do such infringements on voters' electoral autonomy appear if one compares national elections in Imperial Germany to elections in other recent democracies? In this contribution, I examine how the "menu...
Article
Full-text available
In elections around the world, voters are influenced not only by positive offers of gifts and favors but also by the threat of negative sanctions for their individual electoral choices. Preelectoral entitlements such as jobs, assets, and welfare create expectations of future access that brokers can use as powerful negative inducements at the moment...
Article
This article examines the mix of non-programmatic strategies used by politicians to gain voter support in contemporary Eastern Europe. We use a mixed-method design that combines survey-based experiments and qualitative research in a paired comparison of localities in Romania and Bulgaria. Our article documents that the mix of clientelistic strategi...
Article
Inequality and Democratization: An Elite-Competition Approach. By Ansell Ben W. and Samuels David J. . New York: Cambridge University Press, 2014. 254p. $85.00 cloth, $29.99 paper. - Volume 15 Issue 2 - Isabela Mares
Article
Response to David J. Samuels and Ben W. Ansell’s review of From Open Secrets to Secret Voting: Democratic Electoral Reforms and Voter Autonomy - Volume 15 Issue 2 - Isabela Mares
Article
Liberal democracy is often viewed by its supporters as a system of government that responds to the informed and rational preferences of the public organized as voters. And liberal democracy is often viewed by its critics as a system that fails to respond to the informed and rational preferences of its citizens. In this book Larry Bartels and Chris...
Article
This article examines electoral intimidation of voters at their workplace in contemporary new democracies. What is the relative importance of workplace intimidation in the broader portfolio of clientelistic strategies used by politicians at times of elections? What explains the subnational variation in the incidence of this electoral strategy? We a...
Article
Full-text available
This article explains legislators’ support for electoral reforms reducing electoral irregularities and protecting voters’ autonomy at the ballot box in Britain and Germany in the late 19th century. We argue that the main political cleavage over the adoption of new legislation to limit illicit electoral practices pitted politicians able to take adva...
Article
Full-text available
In elections around the world, large numbers of voters are influenced by promises or threats that are contingent on how they vote. Recently, the political science literature has made considerable progress in disaggregating clientelism along two dimensions: first, in recognizing the diversity of actors working as brokers, and second, in conceptualiz...
Article
How does welfare state expansion reconfigure political coalitions? This paper challenges traditional accounts that pit social policy ‘insiders’, who univocally oppose policy expansion, against ‘outsiders’ who favour it. It argues that labour market vulnerability and partisan cues can play a critical role in shaping the preferences of both insiders...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
What are the nonprogrammatic strategies by which candidates target Roma voters during elections? This paper examines these questions, by drawing on two original surveys conducted in the aftermath of recent elections in Hungary and Romania in 2014. The surveys include experimental techniques (list experiments) that allow us to elicit truthful answer...
Article
This article presents an account of the conditions under which politicians engage in the production of electoral intimidation, by enlisting support from state employees and private actors. We characterize the political and economic factors that influence the cost-benefit calculations of these actors and their decisions to engage in the systematic h...
Article
Full-text available
This article examines the adoption of income taxes in Western economies since the 19th century. We identify two empirical regularities that challenge predictions of existing models of taxation and redistribution: While countries with low levels of electoral enfranchisement and high levels of landholding inequality adopt the income tax first, countr...
Article
In recent decades, developing and middle-income countries around the globe have adopted path-breaking reforms to their social protection systems. Among these countries, Latin America has been a pioneer, expanding the state’s commitment on behalf of low-income citizens in key policy areas. This paper undertakes two tasks. First, it documents the sur...
Research
Full-text available
In elections around the world, large numbers of voters are influenced by promises or threats that are contingent on how they vote. Recently, the political science literature has made considerable progress in disaggregating clientelism along two dimensions: first, in identifying different types of actors working as brokers of votes, and second, in c...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
While clientelistic mobilization is a pervasive phenomenon in contemporary elections, one encounters a wide variation in the type of brokers deployed by politicians. This paper formulates and tests a number of hypotheses that seek to explain the variation across localities in the types of brokers mobilized by politicians. We examine the relationshi...
Article
This paper examines the adoption of income taxes by Western economies since the 19th century. We identify two empirical regularities that challenge predictions of existing models of taxation and redistribution: while countries with low levels of electoral enfranchisement and high levels of landholding inequality adopt the income tax first, countrie...
Book
Full-text available
The expansion of suffrage and the introduction of elections are momentous political changes that represent only the first steps in the process of democratization. In the absence of institutions that protect the electoral autonomy of voters against a range of actors who seek to influence voting decisions, political rights can be just hollow promises...
Article
How does welfare state expansion reconfigure political coalitions? Traditional accounts of the welfare state in advanced industrial economies emphasize the tendency for policy “insiders” -- those already incorporated in social insurance systems -- to resist further expansions since this would dilute their share of benefits, while “outsiders” suppor...
Article
Full-text available
What explains the recent rise in non-contributory social insurance programmes in Latin America? Since the 1990s, Latin American countries have enacted significant social policy reforms that have supplemented contributory insurance policies with new or expanded non-contributory programmes, financed by general tax revenues. We present a political exp...
Article
Full-text available
A large body of scholarship has asserted that inequalities in the distribution of fixed assets act as a barrier to democratic transitions. This article proposes a theoretical and empirical amendment of this finding, by arguing that employment conditions in the countryside, rather than inequalities in the distribution of fixed assets affected electo...
Article
This study employs an original, nationally representative survey of individuals in Argentina to understand the economic and political factors that shape individual-level preferences for social insurance. In the past two decades, Latin American democracies have undertaken significant changes in their social welfare institutions, in some cases dramat...
Article
The debate between economic and political explanations of the adoption of proportional representation (PR) has occupied an important place in recent years. The existing tests of these competing explanations have generated inconclusive results. We re-examine this debate and argue that the causal mechanisms affecting politician’s decisions to reform...
Article
Th e welfare state has a large, nearly ubiquitous presence in the economic activity of all advanced industrialized societies. Th e average level of government expenditures in OECD economies grew from 28 percent of GDP (in 1960) to 51 percent of GDP in 1997 (OECD 1999). Th is growth in the size of the public sector has been accompanied by a commensu...
Article
Full-text available
Drawing on recent work and data on social protection in the developing world, this essay evaluates the current state of the art and suggests several important new lines of research. We first examine the historical origin and evolution of social protection systems in developing countries, arguing that insufficient attention has been paid to the auth...
Article
This article studies the welfare state in a global perspective. It argues that the most exciting research opportunities in the study of welfare lie in examining the variation in the politics of social protection in developing economies. It identifies the levels of industrialization and economic openness and views the power resource perspective. Cro...
Chapter
Comparative research on the welfare state goes back to the mid-nineteenth century. As such, it is as old as the welfare state itself. Fabians looked for arguments on how to help the poor and also minimize distortions from state interventions. In Germany, Kathedersozialisten such as Gustav Schmoller and Adolph Wagner searched for policy instruments...
Article
¿Cuáles son las consecuencias de los programas de seguro social más amplios?¿Desvían los Estados de bienestar más importantes recursos de la actividad económica y distorsionan las decisiones de las empresas en materia de inversions? Analizo en el presente artículo la investigación teórica y empírica en torno a las consecuencias económicas del Estad...
Article
What are the economic and employment consequences of larger social insurance programmes? Are larger welfare states diverting resources from economic activity and distorting the investment decisions of firms? I examine theoretical and empirical research on the economic consequences of the welfare state. This review shows that the predictions of a ne...
Article
Was sind die wirtschaftlichen und Beschäftigungsfolgen größerer Sozialversicherungsprogramme? Stimmt es, dass ein größerer Wohlfahrtsstaat Ressourcen von wirtschaftlichen Aktivitäten abzieht und die Investitionsentscheidungen von Unternehmen verzerrt? Ich untersuche theoretische und empirische Forschungsarbeiten zu den wirtschaftlichen Folgen des W...
Article
Quelles sont les conséquences pour l'économie et l'emploi de programmes d'assurance sociale plus vastes? Les Etats providence plus importants détournent-ils des ressources de l'activitééconomique et faussent-ils les décisions des entreprises en matière d'investissements? J'étudie ici les travaux de recherche théorique et expérimentale sur le sujet....
Book
Why were European economies able to pursue the simultaneous commitment to full employment and welfare state expansion during the first decades of the postwar period and why did this virtuous relationship break down during recent decades? This book provides an answer to this question, by highlighting the critical importance of a political exchange b...
Article
This article develops and tests a political model specifying the conditions under which external risk leads to the introduction of redistributive social policies and argues that external risk sharpens a domestic political cleavage over the design of institutions of social insurance. Workers in sectors facing high volatility of income will support t...
Article
Full-text available
OECD economies were able to reconcile the pursuit of welfare state expansion and full employment during the first decades of the postwar period. Yet the trade-off between these two policy objectives widened in recent decades. To explore the question of why this change occurred, this article extends familiar models of wage determination by adding a...
Article
Full-text available
What is the impact of economic insecurity on the development of institutions of social insurance? Existing studies have examined this question by exploring the impact of various measures of economic volatility on aggregate government expenditures or revenues. These aggregate data are, however, an imperfect proxy of the character of institutions of...
Book
Full-text available
The book provides a systematic evaluation of the role played by business in the development of the modern welfare state. When and why have employers supported the development of institutions of social insurance that provide benefits to workers for various employment-related risks? What factors explain the variation in the social policy preferences...
Article
Full-text available
When and why have employers supported the development of institutions of social insurance that provide benefits to workers during various employment-related risks? The analysis developed in this article challenges the dominant explanations of welfare state development, which are premised on the assumption that business opposes social insurance. The...
Article
What explains the decline in the labor force participation rates of elderly workers at the end of their working lives? Why have governments been unable to revert towards early exit from the labor market? This paper provides an actor-centered analysis of the development of early retirement, highlighting the political negotiation among unions, employ...
Article
In order to shed light on the recent debates that are reinterpreting the role played by organized employers in the development of modern social policy, this paper examines the origin of the system of contributory social insurance during the Weimar period. Contrary to ‘laborist’ accounts of the origin of the modern welfare state that view the workin...
Article
Full-text available
In order to shed light on the recent debates that are reinterpreting the role played by organized employers in the development of modern social policy, this paperexamines the origin of the system of contributory unemployment insurance during the Weimar period. Contrary to the claims of the laborist accounts of the origin ofthe modern welfare state...
Article
Full-text available
The goal of this paper is to provide the elements of a unitary analytical framework that incorporates the findings of two bodies of literature which, so far, havedeveloped independently: comparative models of the political economy that distinguish between coordinated and uncoordinated market economies and comparative models of social policy. While...
Article
Abstract will be provided by author.
Article
The provision of social insurance in Latin America has undergone rapid and significant changes in recent years. After a strong swing toward private solutions in the 1990s, many countries have moved decisively in the opposite direction in the 2000s. Publicly-funded initiatives – including tax-financed, non-contributory benefits – have taken on new p...
Article
Conventional explanations of democratization assume a hike in taxation following suffrage extension. As the median voter grows poorer, the preference for redistribution rises and so does taxation. This paper presents a theoretical and empirical challenge of this proposition. In particular, we argue that taxation might be utilized precisely to delay...
Article
Thesis (Ph. D.)--Harvard University, 1998. Includes bibliographical references (leaves 409-449).

Network

Cited By

Projects

Projects (2)