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Legitimacy and Policy during Crises: Subnational COVID-19 Responses in Bolivia

Velasco-Guachalla, V Ximena and Hummel, Calla and Nelson-Nuñez, Jami and Boulding, Carew (2022) 'Legitimacy and Policy during Crises: Subnational COVID-19 Responses in Bolivia.' Perspectives on Politics, 20 (2). pp. 528-546. ISSN 1537-5927

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Why did some Bolivian departments have more success containing COVID-19 than others? We argue that low government legitimacy hampers coordinated responses to national crises, particularly where political polarization is severe and the crisis response becomes politicized. Low legitimacy can intensify the challenges of poverty and poor infrastructure. An original dataset of daily observations on subnational coronavirus policy and cell phone mobility data, paired with administrative data on cases and deaths, suggests that political divisions influenced governors’ policy implementation and citizens’ compliance. In departments that opposed the president, policies were more likely to deviate from the stricter national policy while mobility and protest activity were high. In departments aligned with the president, local policy followed national policy and citizens complied with policy and quarantine restrictions for a longer period of time.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences
Faculty of Social Sciences > Government, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 02 Dec 2021 11:06
Last Modified: 20 Jun 2022 22:39

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