Resistance to socially desired reforms may arise from uncertainty about the consequences of reforms at the individual level (Fernandez and Rodrik, 1991). Without a binding commitment, a promise to compensate losers will not raise support for reforms due to a credibility problem. This paper shows that voting simultaneously on several reforms may solve the credibility problem. It is argued that the governmental agreement in the Netherlands has served as a means to vote simultaneously on several reforms and has helped breaking political deadlocks. Moreover, our model provides an explanation for some perceived changes in the Dutch policy making process.
Tinbergen Institute Discussion Paper Series
Tinbergen Institute

Dur, R., & Swank, O. (1997). On the Role of the Governmental Agreement in Breaking Political Deadlocks (No. TI 97-023/1). Tinbergen Institute Discussion Paper Series. Retrieved from