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Influential Opinion Leaders

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  • Jakub Steiner
  • Colin Stewart

Abstract

We present a two-stage coordination game in which early choices of experts with special interests are observed by followers who move in the second stage. We show that the equilibrium outcome is biased toward the experts' interests even though followers know the distribution of expert interests and account for it when evaluating observed experts' actions. Expert influence is fully decentralized in the sense that each individual expert has a negligible impact. The bias in favor of experts results from a social learning effect that is multiplied through a coordination motive. We show that the total effect can be large even if the direct social learning effect is small. We apply our results to the diffusion of products with network externalities and the onset of social movements.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economic Institute, Prague in its series CERGE-EI Working Papers with number wp458.

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Date of creation: Oct 2012
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Handle: RePEc:cer:papers:wp458

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Keywords: voting; coordination; experts;

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References

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  1. Barry Nalebuff & Ron Shachar, 1999. "Follow the Leader: Theory and Evidence on Political Participation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 525-547, June.
  2. DellaVigna, Stefano & Kaplan, Ethan, 2006. "The Fox News Effect: Media Bias and Voting," Seminar Papers 748, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  3. Stephen Morris & Bernardo Guimaraes, 2004. "Risk and Wealth in a Model of Self-Fulfilling Currency Attacks," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm424, Yale School of Management.
  4. Steiner, Jakub, 2008. "Coordination of mobile labor," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 139(1), pages 25-46, March.
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  6. Hyun Song Shin & Giancarlo Corsetti & Amil Dasgupta & Stephen Morris, 2001. "Does One Soros Make a Difference? A Theory of Currency Crises with Large and Small Traders," FMG Discussion Papers dp372, Financial Markets Group.
  7. Chris Edmond, 2011. "Information Manipulation, Coordination, and Regime Change," Department of Economics - Working Papers Series 1125, The University of Melbourne.
  8. George-Marios Angeletos & Christian Hellwig & Alessandro Pavan, 2007. "Dynamic Global Games of Regime Change: Learning, Multiplicity, and the Timing of Attacks," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 75(3), pages 711-756, 05.
  9. Steven Callander, 2007. "Bandwagons and Momentum in Sequential Voting," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 74(3), pages 653-684.
  10. David P. Myatt, 2004. "On the Theory of Strategic Voting," Economics Series Working Papers 186, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  11. Kevin Murphy & Andrei Shleifer, 2004. "Persuasion in Politics," NBER Working Papers 10248, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Katz, Michael L & Shapiro, Carl, 1985. "Network Externalities, Competition, and Compatibility," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(3), pages 424-40, June.
  13. Callander, Steven, 2008. "Majority rule when voters like to win," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 393-420, November.
  14. Mehmet Ekmekci, 2008. "Manipulation through political endorsements," Discussion Papers 1509, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  15. David P. Myatt, 2007. "On the Theory of Strategic Voting -super-1," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 74(1), pages 255-281.
  16. Jakub Steiner, 2006. "Coordination in a Mobile World," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp295, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economic Institute, Prague.
  17. Stephen Coate, 2004. "Pareto-Improving Campaign Finance Policy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 628-655, June.
  18. Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 2002. "Special Interest Politics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262571676, December.
  19. George-Marios Angeletos & Alessandro Pavan, 2007. "Dynamic Global Games of Regime Change: Learning, Multiplicity and Timing of Attacks," Discussion Papers 1497, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  20. Dasgupta, Amil, 2007. "Coordination and delay in global games," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 134(1), pages 195-225, May.
  21. Katz, Michael L & Shapiro, Carl, 1986. "Technology Adoption in the Presence of Network Externalities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 822-41, August.
  22. Nicholas Economides, 2007. "Patents and Antitrust: Application to Adjacent Markets," Working Papers 07-24, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics.
  23. Duncan J. Watts & Peter Sheridan Dodds, 2007. "Influentials, Networks, and Public Opinion Formation," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 34(4), pages 441-458, 05.
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  1. What Should We Do About Influential Opinion Leaders รข?? Expert Biases & Election Outcomes
    by Miguel in Simoleon Sense on 2010-04-29 14:47:37

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