Citizen Perceptions of Government Service Quality: Evidence from Public Schools

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Citizen Perceptions of Government Service Quality: Evidence from Public Schools

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Title: Citizen Perceptions of Government Service Quality: Evidence from Public Schools
Author: West, Martin Raymond; Chingos, Matthew Mark; Henderson, Michael

Note: Order does not necessarily reflect citation order of authors.

Citation: Chingos, Matthew M., Michael Henderson and Martin R. West. 2012. Citizen Perceptions of Government Service Quality: Evidence from Public Schools. Quarterly Journal of Political Science 7, no 4: 411-445. http://dx.doi.org/10.1561/100.00011071
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Abstract: Conventional models of democratic accountability hinge on citizens’ ability to evaluate government performance accurately, yet there is little evidence on the degree to which citizen perceptions of the quality of government services correspond to actual service quality. Using nationally representative survey data, we find that citizens’ perceptions of the quality of specific public schools reflect publicly available information about the level of student achievement in those schools. The relationship between actual and perceived school quality is two to three times stronger for parents of school-age children, who have the most contact with schools and arguably the strongest incentive to be informed. However, this relationship does not differ by homeowner
status or by respondents’ race, ethnicity, income, or education. A regression discontinuity analysis of an oversample of Florida residents confirms that public accountability systems can have a causal effect on citizen perceptions of service quality.
Published Version: doi:10.1561/100.00011071
Other Sources: http://www.hks.harvard.edu/pepg/PDF/Papers/PEPG10-16_Chingos-Henderson-West.pdf
Terms of Use: This article is made available under the terms and conditions applicable to Open Access Policy Articles, as set forth at http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:dash.current.terms-of-use#OAP
Citable link to this page: http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:4460856
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