Young adults and the (non-)formation of voting habits - Evidence from Norwegian first-time eligible citizens

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Hernæs, Øystein M.




Scandinavian Political Studies

Vol 42(2), 151-164

Sammendrag (engelsk)

This article exploits variation in age among first‐time eligible citizens in Norwegian elections that arises through voting eligibility rules and two‐year election cycles to investigate voting habits. I find that obtaining the right to vote at a lower age is associated with substantially higher turnout among first‐time eligible citizens, however, this difference in political participation does not persist for subsequent elections. Building on the established literature on the habitual nature of voting, the results show that getting young citizens to vote once is not sufficient to create a habit of voting, and suggest that how the voting decision is made matter for the habit formation process.