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Aliz Tóth

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Graduate Student Research Funding | 2018 - 2019 Academic Year

India's Urban Voter Problem: Theory and Evidence

Today half of the world’s population lives in urban areas and this number is projected to increase. In developing countries rapid urbanization has resulted in poor infrastructure and public goods provision and often decreased political participation. How does urbanization affect democratic competition? This project seeks an answer to this question in India, the democracy with currently the largest urban population. Combining quantitative evidence with interviews and historical sources, Tóth investigates whether affirmative action policies implemented in 1992 and trade reforms in 1991 could have led to middle class discontent with politics and subsequent disengagement in India’s urban areas.

Aliz Tóth, Department of Political Science

Aliz Toth

Aliz Tóth is a PhD student in political science at Stanford University. Her dissertation research investigates why government efforts to acquire land for public projects and private enterprises often result in protest and litigation, with a regional focus on India. Tóth’s dissertation proposes a novel theory of bargaining breakdown where conflict becomes a rational response for governments and landowners when the price of land and communities’ resolve is uncertain. The dissertation uses a variety of methods including qualitative interviews, original survey data, and public datasets to test the role of asymmetric information and land prices in perpetuating conflict.

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