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Deanna Kolberg

Informal Communities and Data Reporting Bias

In addition to buying and selling votes, brokers are often simultaneously in positions of community leadership working on advocacy and governance. Brokerage and community work can in some cases be complementary- the broker’s community work helps build a network which they can leverage to buy votes- but can also be rivalrous { a broker’s electoral work can make their governance efforts more difficult. Does changes in the political environment effect effort and outcomes in grassroots governance? I demonstrate the connection between neighborhood leaders’ brokerage and governance work by testing the relationship between levels of broker competition (a brokerage indicator) and neighborhood membership file completeness (a governance quality indicator). In doing so, my research expands the literature on broker behavior by documenting how the governance roles that brokers play in their community are influenced by their political work and joins a growing literature on the importance of grassroots actors in everyday political life.

Download the paper here (U-M only)