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Costly participation and heterogeneous preferences in informational committees

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  • Hongbin Cai

Abstract

Informational committees are groups of people who are designated to gather information. This article develops a simple model of committee size based on costly participation and preference heterogeneity. In a setting in which the information structure and policy preferences are both represented by normal random variables, I characterize an equilibrium under the mean decision rule and derive the optimal committee size. I show that when effort costs are sufficiently high, preference heterogeneity can provide members additional incentives to gather information, and thus the optimal committee size and the principal's expected payoff can increase in the heterogeneity of committee members' policy preferences. Copyright (c) 2009, RAND.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by RAND Corporation in its journal The RAND Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 40 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 173-189

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Handle: RePEc:bla:randje:v:40:y:2009:i:1:p:173-189

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Cited by:
  1. Bernard Caillaud & Jean Tirole, 2007. "Consensus Building: How to Persuade a Group," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(5), pages 1877-1900, December.
  2. Oliveros, Santiago, 2013. "Abstention, ideology and information acquisition," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 148(3), pages 871-902.
  3. Bikhchandani, Sushil, 2010. "Information acquisition and full surplus extraction," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 145(6), pages 2282-2308, November.
  4. Paolo Balduzzi & Clara Graziano & Annalisa Luporini, 2011. "Voting in Small Committees," Working Papers - Economics wp2011_01.rdf, Universita' degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Scienze per l'Economia e l'Impresa.
  5. Dezsö Szalay & Ramon Arean, 2005. "Communicating with a Team of Experts," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 05.12, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP.
  6. Johannes Spinnewijn & Florian Ederer & Arthur Campbell, 2011. "Information Search and Revelation in Groups," 2011 Meeting Papers 997, Society for Economic Dynamics.

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