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Majority rule when voters like to win

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  • Callander, Steven

Abstract

I analyze symmetric majority rule voting equilibria when voters wish to elect the better candidate and to vote for the winner. When voters care only about the winning candidate (the standard formulation) a unique responsive equilibrium exists. The addition of a desire to win creates multiple equilibria, some with unusual properties. In most of these equilibria information is not aggregated effectively, and I uncover the novel possibility of negative information aggregation in which information aggregated in equilibrium is used to select the worse rather than the better candidate. I then characterize the efficiency of optimal equilibria as the population becomes large and show that a discontinuity arises in the information aggregation capabilities of the majority rule voting mechanism: in elections without a dominant front-running candidate the better candidate is almost surely elected, whereas in races with a front-runner information cannot be effectively aggregated in equilibrium.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Games and Economic Behavior.

Volume (Year): 64 (2008)
Issue (Month): 2 (November)
Pages: 393-420

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Handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:64:y:2008:i:2:p:393-420

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622836

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Keywords: Strategic voting Information aggregation Conformity;

References

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  1. Glazer, Jacob & Rubinstein, Ariel, 1998. "Motives and Implementation: On the Design of Mechanisms to Elicit Opinions," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 79(2), pages 157-173, April.
  2. Bernheim, B Douglas, 1994. "A Theory of Conformity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(5), pages 841-77, October.
  3. Ronny Razin, 2003. "Signaling and Election Motivations in a Voting Model with Common Values and Responsive Candidates," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(4), pages 1083-1119, 07.
  4. Steven Callander, 2007. "Bandwagons and Momentum in Sequential Voting," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 74(3), pages 653-684.
  5. Adam Meirowitz & Alan E. Wiseman, 2005. "Contributions And Elections With Network Externalities," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 17, pages 77-110, 03.
  6. Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin, 2002. "Social Value of Public Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1521-1534, December.
  7. Kenneth Shotts, 2006. "A Signaling Model of Repeated Elections," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 27(2), pages 251-261, October.
  8. George A. Akerlof, 1997. "Social Distance and Social Decisions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(5), pages 1005-1028, September.
  9. Piketty, Thomas, 2000. "Voting as Communicating," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(1), pages 169-91, January.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Laurent Bouton & Micael Castanheira De Moura & A. Llorente-Saguer, 2012. "Divided Majority and Information Aggregation: Theory and Experiment," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/136800, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  2. Balankin, Alexander S. & Martínez Cruz, Miguel Ángel & Martínez, Alfredo Trejo, 2011. "Effect of initial concentration and spatial heterogeneity of active agent distribution on opinion dynamics," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 390(21), pages 3876-3887.
  3. Rune Midjord & Tomás Rodríguez Barraquer & Justin Mattias Valasek, 2014. "Over-Caution of Large Committees of Experts," CESifo Working Paper Series 4810, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Rune Midjord & Tomas Rodriguez Barraquer & Justin Valasek, 2013. "Over-Caution of Large Committees of Experts," Discussion Paper Series dp654, The Center for the Study of Rationality, Hebrew University, Jerusalem.
  5. Midjord, Rune & Rodríguez Barraquer, Tomás & Valasek, Justin, 2013. "Over-caution of large committees of experts," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Economics of Change SP II 2013-313, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  6. Chia-Hui Chen & Junichiro Ishida, 2011. "Seeking Harmony Amidst Diversity: Consensus Building with Network Externalities," ISER Discussion Paper 0826, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
  7. Jakub Steiner & Colin Stewart, 2010. "Influential Opinion Leaders," Discussion Papers 1485, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  8. Emilio Barucci & Marco Tolotti, 2010. "Identity, reputation and social interaction with an application to sequential voting," Working Papers 204, Department of Applied Mathematics, Università Ca' Foscari Venezia.
  9. Elena Panova, 2011. "A Passion for Democracy," CIRANO Working Papers 2011s-47, CIRANO.

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