Rational Ignorance and Voting Behavior
AbstractWe model a two-alternative election in which voters may acquire information about which is the best alternative for all voters. Voters differ in their cost of acquiring information. We show that as the number of voters increases, the fraction of voters who acquire information declines to zero. However, if the support of the cost distribution is not bounded away from zero, there is an equilibrium with some information acquisition for arbitrarily large electorates. This equilibrium dominates in terms of welfare any equilibrium without information acquisition--even though generally there is too little information acquisition with respect to an optimal strategy profile.
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.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by UCLA Department of Economics in its series Levine's Bibliography with number 784828000000000461.
Date of creation: 06 Oct 2005
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.dklevine.com/
Other versions of this item:
- D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2005-10-15 (All new papers)
- NEP-CDM-2005-10-15 (Collective Decision-Making)
- NEP-GTH-2005-10-15 (Game Theory)
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.:
- Helios Herrera & Cesar Martinelli, 2005.
"Group Formation and Voter Participation,"
0502, Centro de Investigacion Economica, ITAM.
- Helios Herrera & César Martinelli, 2006. "Group Formation and Voter Participation," Levine's Bibliography 666156000000000463, UCLA Department of Economics.
- Helios Herrera & Cesar Martinelli, 2006. "Group Formation and Voter Participation," Levine's Bibliography 321307000000000225, UCLA Department of Economics.
- Cesar Martinelli & Helios Herrera, 2005. "Group Formation and Voter Participation," 2005 Meeting Papers 687, Society for Economic Dynamics.
- Nicola Persico, 2004. "Committee Design with Endogenous Information," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71(1), pages 165-191, 01.
- 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.
- Gerling, Kerstin & Gruner, Hans Peter & Kiel, Alexandra & Schulte, Elisabeth, 2005. "Information acquisition and decision making in committees: A survey," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 563-597, September.
- Nicola Persico, 2004. "Committee Design with Endogenous Information," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(1), pages 165-191.
- Krasa, Stefan & Polborn, Mattias K., 2009. "Is mandatory voting better than voluntary voting?," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 275-291, May.
- Santiago Oliveros & Felix Vardy, 2013. "Demand for Slant: How Abstention Shapes Voters’ Choice of News Media," Economics Discussion Papers 734, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
- Cesar Martinelli, 2011. "Ignorance and Naivete in Large Elections," Working Papers 1107, Centro de Investigacion Economica, ITAM.
- Christian Bruns, 2013. "Elections and Market Provision of Information," CESifo Working Paper Series 4091, CESifo Group Munich.
- Volker Hahn, 2013. "Committee Design with Endogenous Participation," Working Paper Series of the Department of Economics, University of Konstanz 2013-12, Department of Economics, University of Konstanz.
- Matteo Triossiv, 2010. "Costly information acquisition. Better to toss a coin?," Documentos de Trabajo 267, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
- Volker Hahn, 2012.
"On the Optimal Size of Committees of Experts,"
Working Paper Series of the Department of Economics, University of Konstanz
2012-24, Department of Economics, University of Konstanz.
- Hahn, Volker, 2012. "On the Optimal Size of Committees of Experts," Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 62041, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
- Santiago Oliveros, 2013. "Aggregation of endogenous information in large elections," Economics Discussion Papers 733, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (David K. Levine).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.