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Producing and Manipulating Information

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  • Robert Dur
  • Otto H. Swank

Abstract

This paper studies the selection of information collecting agents by policy makers in the light of two agency problems. First, it is often hard to ascertain how much effort agents have put in acquiring information. Second, when agents have an interest in the policy outcome, they may manipulate information. We show that unbiased advisers put highest effort in collecting information. Eliminating manipulation of information, however, requires that the preferences of the policy maker and the adviser be aligned. Therefore, policy makers appoint advisers with preferences that are less extreme than their own. Copyright 2005 Royal Economic Society.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Royal Economic Society in its journal The Economic Journal.

Volume (Year): 115 (2005)
Issue (Month): 500 (01)
Pages: 185-199

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Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:115:y:2005:i:500:p:185-199

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References

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  1. Austen-Smith David, 1993. "Interested Experts and Policy Advice: Multiple Referrals under Open Rule," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 3-43, January.
  2. Potters, Jan & van Winden, Frans, 1992. " Lobbying and Asymmetric Information," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 74(3), pages 269-92, October.
  3. Gilligan, Thomas W & Krehbiel, Keith, 1987. "Collective Decisionmaking and Standing Committees: An Informational Rationale for Restrictive Amendment Procedures," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(2), pages 287-335, Fall.
  4. Vijay Krishna & John Morgan, 1999. "A Model of Expertise," Game Theory and Information 9902003, EconWPA.
    • Krishna, V. & Morgan, J., 1999. "A Model of Expertise," Papers 206, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Public and International Affairs.
    • Vijay Krishna & John Morgan, 1999. "A Model of Expertise," Working Papers 154, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Discussion Papers in Economics..
  5. Paul R. Milgrom & John Roberts, 1985. "Relying on the Information of Interested Parties," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 749, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  6. Aghion, Philippe & Tirole, Jean, 1997. "Formal and Real Authority in Organizations," Scholarly Articles 4554125, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  7. Gilligan, Thomas W & Krehbiel, Keith, 1997. "Specialization Decisions within Committee," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 13(2), pages 366-86, October.
  8. Crawford, Vincent P & Sobel, Joel, 1982. "Strategic Information Transmission," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1431-51, November.
  9. Ottaviani, Marco & Sorensen, Peter, 2001. "Information aggregation in debate: who should speak first?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(3), pages 393-421, September.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Klaas J. Beniers, 2004. "On the Composition of Committees," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 20(2), pages 353-378, October.
  2. Irene Valsecchi, 2013. "The expert problem: a survey," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 14(4), pages 303-331, November.
  3. Phongthorn Wrasai & Otto H. Swank, 2004. "Policy Makers, Advisors, and Reputation," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 04-037/1, Tinbergen Institute, revised 09 Dec 2004.
  4. Bourjade, Sylvain & Jullien, Bruno, 2011. "The roles of reputation and transparency on the behavior of biased experts," MPRA Paper 34813, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Gromb, Denis & Martimort, David, 2007. "Collusion and the organization of delegated expertise," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 137(1), pages 271-299, November.
  6. Zara Sharif & Otto H. Swank, 2012. "Do More Powerful Interest Groups have a Disproportionate Influence on Policy?," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 12-134/VII, Tinbergen Institute.
  7. Silvia Dominguez Martinez & Otto H. Swank, 2004. "Polarization, Information Collection and Electoral Control," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 04-035/1, Tinbergen Institute.
  8. Flavia Roldán, 2013. "The organization of expertise in the presence of communication," Review of Economic Design, Springer, vol. 17(1), pages 63-81, March.
  9. John M. de Figueiredo & Charles M. Cameron, 2006. "Endogenous Cost Lobbying: Theory and Evidence," Hi-Stat Discussion Paper Series d05-156, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
  10. Shun-ichiro Bessho & Kimiko Terai, 2013. "Fiscal restraints by advisors," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 14(3), pages 205-232, August.
  11. Di Maggio, Marco, 2009. "Accountability and Cheap Talk," MPRA Paper 18652, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  12. Gromb, Denis & Martimort, David, 2004. "The Organization of Delegated Expertise," CEPR Discussion Papers 4572, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. repec:dgr:uvatin:2012134 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Elisabeth Schulte, 2012. "Communication in committees: who should listen?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 150(1), pages 97-117, January.

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