Claire S. H. Lim, James Snyder, 13 July 2021

There are many ways to select and retain public officials in representative democracies. This column discusses the literature on selection and retention procedures for low-information public offices. The authors first overview the historical origins of the variation. Then, they discuss conceptual frameworks used to assess the functioning of direct elections and present empirical regularities.  Finally, the authors suggest avenues for future research aided by digitisation and improved textual analysis of media coverage and government data.

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