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Marie Lechler wins prestigious Reinhard-Selten Award

15.09.2017 – 18.12.2020

 Fotos_Seltenpreis2  Foto-Seltenpreis-cropped

Prof. Dr. Christine Zulehner (Chairwoman of the 2017 Open Meeting Commission) and Prof. Achim Wambach (Chairman of German Economic Association) with this year's Reinhard-Selten Award Winner Marie Lechler

Pictures: Uni Wien/Lichtenegger

Marie Lechler, a doctoral student at the Munich Graduate School of Economics and the DFG Research Training Group 1928 has been slected for this year’s Reinhard-Selten Award by the German Economic Association together with her co-author Lachlan McNamee from Stanford University: Congratulations, Marie!

The prize has been awarded for their paper "Decentralized Depotism? Indirect Colonial Rule Undermines Contemporary Democratic Attitudes" at the Annual Congress of the German Economic Association 2017 in Vienna.

The paper identifies indirect and direct colonial rule as causal factors in shaping support for democracy by exploiting a within-country natural experiment in Namibia. Throughout the colonial era, northern Namibia was indirectly ruled through a system of appointed indigenous traditional elites whereas colonial authorities directly ruled southern Namibia. Using this spatial discontinuity, they find that individuals in indirectly ruled areas are less likely to support democracy and turnout at elections. They explore potential mechanisms and find suggestive evidence that the greater influence of traditional leaders in indirectly ruled areas has socialized individuals to accept non-electoral bases of political authority.

Every year, the Verein awards the Reinhard Selten Award (Young Author Best Paper Award) for papers that are particularly characterized by originality, significance of the research question and clean methodology.