Civic Duty and Turnout in Japan and South Korea
Democratic governments rely on participation by all citizens for balanced and equitable election outcomes. What maintains voter turnout, this central aspect of democratic health? Civic duty is a powerful force in getting citizens to the polls, and yet it has often been misunderstood or neglected in empirical studies. By contrast, political theory has developed a rich literature on the obligations of democratic citizens. We show that a new statistical model based on political theorists’ analysis ofduty substantially improves the understanding of turnout in Japan and South Korea.