The nature of tournaments
AbstractThis paper characterizes the optimal way for a principal to structure a rank-order tournament in a moral hazard setting (as in Lazear and Rosen in J Polit Econ 89:841–864, 1981). We find that it is often optimal to give rewards to top performers that are smaller in magnitude than corresponding punishments to poor performers. The paper identifies four reasons why the principal might prefer to give larger rewards than punishments: (1) R is small relative to P (where R is risk aversion and P is absolute prudence); (2) the distribution of shocks to output is asymmetric and the asymmetry takes a particular form; (3) the principal faces a limited liability constraint; and (4) there is agent heterogeneity of a particular form. Copyright Springer-Verlag 2012
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Springer in its journal Economic Theory.
Volume (Year): 51 (2012)
Issue (Month): 2 (October)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://link.springer.de/link/service/journals/00199/index.htm
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- L22 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Organization and Market Structure
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Carroll, Christopher D & Kimball, Miles S, 1996.
"On the Concavity of the Consumption Function,"
Econometric Society, vol. 64(4), pages 981-92, July.
- Christopher D. Carroll & Miles S. Kimball, 1995. "On the Concavity of the Consumption Function," Macroeconomics 9503003, EconWPA.
- Christopher D. Carroll & Miles S. Kimball, 1995. "On the concavity of the consumption function," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 95-10, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
- Caplin, A. & Nalebuff, B., 1989.
"Aggregation And Social Choice: A Mean Voter Theorem,"
1989_31, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
- Caplin, Andrew & Nalebuff, Barry, 1991. "Aggregation and Social Choice: A Mean Voter Theorem," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(1), pages 1-23, January.
- Andrew Caplin & Barry Nalebuff, 1990. "Aggregation and Social Choice: A Mean Voter Theorem," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 938, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- Barry J. Nalebuff & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1983. "Prices and Incentives: Towards a General Theory of Compensation and Competition," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 14(1), pages 21-43, Spring.
- Vijay Krishna & John Morgan, 1994.
"An Analysis of the War of Attrition and the All-Pay Auction,"
Game Theory and Information
- Krishna, Vijay & Morgan, John, 1997. "An Analysis of the War of Attrition and the All-Pay Auction," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 343-362, February.
- Arye L. Hillman & John G. Riley, 1987.
"Politically Contestable Rents and Transfers,"
UCLA Economics Working Papers
452, UCLA Department of Economics.
- Stergios Skaperdas, 1996.
"Contest success functions (*),"
Springer, vol. 7(2), pages 283-290.
- Barut, Yasar & Kovenock, Dan, 1998. "The symmetric multiple prize all-pay auction with complete information," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 14(4), pages 627-644, November.
- Edward P. Lazear, 1991. "Labor Economics and the Psychology of Organizations," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 5(2), pages 89-110, Spring.
- Jewitt, Ian, 1988. "Justifying the First-Order Approach to Principal-Agent Problems," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(5), pages 1177-90, September.
- Lazear, Edward P & Rosen, Sherwin, 1981.
"Rank-Order Tournaments as Optimum Labor Contracts,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(5), pages 841-64, October.
- Kimball, Miles S, 1990.
"Precautionary Saving in the Small and in the Large,"
Econometric Society, vol. 58(1), pages 53-73, January.
- Miles S. Kimball, 1989. "Precautionary Saving in the Small and in the Large," NBER Working Papers 2848, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Anja Schöttner, 2005.
"Fixed-Prize Tournaments versus First-Price Auctions in Innovation Contests,"
SFB 649 Discussion Papers
SFB649DP2005-041, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
- Anja Schöttner, 2008. "Fixed-prize tournaments versus first-price auctions in innovation contests," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 35(1), pages 57-71, April.
- Jonathan Levin, 2002. "Multilateral Contracting And The Employment Relationship," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(3), pages 1075-1103, August.
- Clark, Derek J & Riis, Christian, 1998. "Competition over More Than One Prize," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(1), pages 276-89, March.
- Glazer, Amihai & Hassin, Refael, 1988. "Optimal Contests," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 26(1), pages 133-43, January.
- Benny Moldovanu & Aner Sela & Xianwen Shi, 2012.
"Carrots And Sticks: Prizes And Punishments In Contests,"
Western Economic Association International, vol. 50(2), pages 453-462, 04.
- Benny Moldovanu & Aner Sela & Xianwen Shi, 2010. "Carrots and Sticks: Prizes and Punishments in Contests," Working Papers tecipa-399, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
- Benny Modovanu & Aner Sela & Xianwen Shi, 2008. "Carrots and Sticks: Prizes and Punishments in Contests," Working Papers 0802, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Department of Economics.
- Moldovanu, Benny & Sela, Aner & Shi, Xianwen, 2008. "Carrots and Sticks: Prizes and Punishments in Contests," CEPR Discussion Papers 6770, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Ella Segev & Aner Sela, 2011. "Sequential All-Pay Auctions with Head Starts and Noisy Outputs," Working Papers 1106, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Department of Economics.
- Segev, Ella & Sela, Aner, 2011. "Sequential All-Pay Auctions with Noisy Outputs," CEPR Discussion Papers 8509, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- E. Glenn Dutcher & Loukas Balafoutas & Florian Lindner & Dmitry Ryvkin & Matthias Sutter, 2013. "Strive to be first or avoid being last: An experiment on relative performance incentives," Working Papers 2013-08, Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck.
- Thomas, Jonathan P. & Wang, Zhewei, 2013. "Optimal punishment in contests with endogenous entry," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 91(C), pages 34-50.
- Lindner, Florian & Dutcher, E. Glenn & Balafoutas, Loukas & Ryvkin, Dmitry & Sutter, Matthias, 2013. "Strive to be first and avoid being last: An experiment on relative performance incentives," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79885, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
- Sela, Aner, 2009. "Best-of-Three All-Pay Auctions," CEPR Discussion Papers 7224, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Loukas Balafoutas & Glenn Dutcher & Florian Lindner & Dmitry Ryvkin, 2012. "The optimal allocation of prizes in tournaments of heterogeneous agents," Working Papers 2012-08, Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Guenther Eichhorn) or (Christopher F Baum).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.