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Optimal redistricting under geographical constraints: Why "pack and crack" does not work

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  • Puppe, Clemens
  • Tasnádi, Attila

Abstract

We show that optimal partisan redistricting with geographical constraints is a computationally intractable (NP-complete) problem. In particular, even when voter's preferences are deterministic, a solution is generally not obtained by concentrating opponent's supporters in "unwinnable" districts ("packing") and spreading one's own supporters evenly among the other districts in order to produce many slight marginal wins ("cracking").

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File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6V84-4WK486F-2/2/1b77be079f6f0f445c51bb5db68bc384
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economics Letters.

Volume (Year): 105 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (October)
Pages: 93-96

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolet:v:105:y:2009:i:1:p:93-96

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/ecolet

Related research

Keywords: Districting Gerrymandering NP-complete problems;

References

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  1. Sherstyuk, Katerina, 1993. "How to Gerrymander: A Formal Analysis," Working Papers 855, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  2. Gilligan, Thomas W & Matsusaka, John G, 1999. " Structural Constraints on Partisan Bias under the Efficient Gerrymander," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 100(1-2), pages 65-84, July.
  3. John N. Friedman & Richard T. Holden, 2008. "Optimal Gerrymandering: Sometimes Pack, but Never Crack," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(1), pages 113-44, March.
  4. Wolfgang Pesendorfer & Faruk Gul, 2007. "Strategic Redistricting," Levine's Bibliography 843644000000000351, UCLA Department of Economics.
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Cited by:
  1. Bracco, Emanuele, 2013. "Optimal districting with endogenous party platforms," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 104(C), pages 1-13.
  2. Biró, Péter, 2011. "A társadalmi döntések számítástudománya - egy új határterület. European Future Technologies Conference and Exhibition (FET'11) COMSOC (Computational Social Choice) szekció MTA Közgazdaság," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(7), pages 709-715.

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