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Pandering to Persuade

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  • Yeon-Koo Che
  • Wouter Dessein
  • Navin Kartik

Abstract

A principal chooses one of n>=2 projects or an outside option. An agent is privately informed about the projects' benefits and shares the principal's preferences except for not internalizing her value from the outside option. We show that strategic communication is characterized by pandering: the agent biases his recommendation toward good-looking projects--those with appealing observable attributes--even when both parties would be better off with some other project. Projects become more acceptable when pitched against a stronger slate of alternatives. We study organizational responses to the pandering distortion, such as delegation and choosing to be less informed.

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File URL: http://www.columbia.edu/~nk2339/Papers/cdk-pandering.pdf
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Paper provided by UCLA Department of Economics in its series Levine's Bibliography with number 661465000000000197.

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Date of creation: 28 Sep 2010
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Handle: RePEc:cla:levrem:661465000000000197

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  1. Mark Bagnoli & Ted Bergstrom, 2005. "Log-concave probability and its applications," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 26(2), pages 445-469, 08.
  2. Jordi Blanes I Vidal & Marc Möller, 2007. "When Should Leaders Share Information with Their Subordinates?," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 16(2), pages 251-283, 06.
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Cited by:
  1. Justine S. Hastings & Brigitte C. Madrian & William L. Skimmyhorn, 2013. "Financial Literacy, Financial Education, and Economic Outcomes," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 5(1), pages 347-373, 05.
  2. Yeon-Koo Che & Jinwoo Kim & Konrad Mierendorff, 2011. "Generalized reduced-form auctions: a network-flow approach," ECON - Working Papers 031, Department of Economics - University of Zurich, revised Mar 2013.
  3. Wonsuk Chung & Rick Harbaugh, 2012. "Biased Recommendations," Working Papers 2012-02, Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, Department of Business Economics and Public Policy.
  4. Rantakari, Heikki, 2014. "A simple model of project selection with strategic communication and uncertain motives," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 102(C), pages 14-42.
  5. Florian Hoffmann & Roman Inderst & Marco Ottaviani, 2013. "Hypertargeting, Limited Attention, and Privacy: Implications for Marketing and Campaigning," Working Papers 479, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  6. Gangopadhyay, Partha, 2014. "Dynamics of mergers, bifurcation and chaos: A new framework," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 403(C), pages 293-307.

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