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Voting in Small Committees

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Author Info

  • Paolo Balduzzi
  • Clara Graziano
  • Annalisa Luporini

Abstract

A small committee has to approve/reject a project with uncertain return. Members have different preferences: some are value-maximizers, others are biased towards approval. We focus on the efficient use of scarce information when communication is not guaranteed, and we provide insights on the optimal committee composition. We show that the presence of biased members can improve the voting outcome by simplifying the strategies of unbiased members. Thus, heterogeneous committees perform at least as well as homogeneous committees. In particular, when value-maximizers outnumber biased members by one vote, the optimal equilibrium becomes unique. Finally, allowing members to communicate brings no improvement.

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File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2012/wp-cesifo-2012-02/cesifo1_wp3732.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 3732.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_3732

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Related research

Keywords: voting; small committees; committees composition; communication in committees;

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References

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  1. Harris, Mark & Spencer, Christopher, 2008. "Decade of dissent: explaining the dissent voting behavior of Bank of England MPC members," MPRA Paper 9100, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Paolo Balduzzi & Clara Graziano & Annalisa Luporini, 2011. "Voting in Corporate Boards with Heterogeneous Preferences," CESifo Working Paper Series 3332, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Timothy J. Feddersen & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 1995. "The Swing Voter's Curse," Discussion Papers 1064, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  4. Nicola Persico, 2004. "Committee Design with Endogenous Information," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(1), pages 165-191.
  5. RIBONI, Alessandro & RUGE-MURCIA, Francisco J., 2007. "Preference Heterogeneity in Monetary Policy Committees," Cahiers de recherche 05-2007, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ.
  6. Roger B. Myerson, 1994. "Extended Poisson Games and the Condorcet Jury Theorem," Discussion Papers 1103, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  7. Jan Marc Berk & Beata K. Bierut, 2005. "On the Optimality of Decisions made by Hub-and-Spokes Monetary Policy Committees," DNB Working Papers 027, Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department.
  8. Blinder, Alan S., 2007. "Monetary policy by committee: Why and how?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 106-123, March.
  9. Nicola Persico, 2004. "Committee Design with Endogenous Information," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71(1), pages 165-191, 01.
  10. Kiel, Alexandra & Gerling, Kerstin & Schulte, Elisabeth & Grüner, Hans Peter, 2003. "Information acquisition and decision making in committees: a survey," Working Paper Series 0256, European Central Bank.
  11. Rebecca Morton & Jean-Robert Tyran, 2008. "Let the Experts Decide? Asymmetric Information, Abstention, and Coordination in Standing Committees," Discussion Papers 08-25, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  12. Piketty, Thomas, 1999. "The information-aggregation approach to political institutions," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(4-6), pages 791-800, April.
  13. Renée B. Adams & Daniel Ferreira, 2007. "A Theory of Friendly Boards," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(1), pages 217-250, 02.
  14. Christopher Spencer, 2006. "The Dissent Voting Behaviour of Bank of England MPC Members," School of Economics Discussion Papers 0306, School of Economics, University of Surrey.
  15. Eckel, Catherine & Holt, Charles A, 1989. "Strategic Voting in Agenda-Controlled Committee Experiments," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(4), pages 763-73, September.
  16. John Duggan & Cesar Martinelli, 1999. "A Bayesian Model of Voting in Juries," Working Papers 9904, Centro de Investigacion Economica, ITAM.
  17. Hongbin Cai, 2009. "Costly participation and heterogeneous preferences in informational committees," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 40(1), pages 173-189.
  18. Jung, Alexander, 2011. "An international comparison of voting by committees," Working Paper Series 1383, European Central Bank.
  19. Asher Wolinsky, 1999. "Eliciting Information From Multiple Experts," Discussion Papers 1277, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  20. Timothy Feddersen & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 1997. "Voting Behavior and Information Aggregation in Elections With Private Information," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1560, David K. Levine.
  21. Raheja, Charu G., 2005. "Determinants of Board Size and Composition: A Theory of Corporate Boards," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 40(02), pages 283-306, June.
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