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One Person, Many Votes: Divided Majority and Information Aggregation

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  • Bouton, Laurent
  • Castanheira, Micael

Abstract

This paper compares the properties of three electoral systems when voters have imperfect information. Imperfect information blurs voter decisions and may divorce the electoral outcome from the true preferences of the electorate. The challenge for electoral design is therefore to translate the (sometimes contradictory) elements of information dispersed in the electorate into the most efficient aggregate outcome. We propose a novel model of multi-candidate elections in Poisson games, and show that Approval Voting produces a unique equilibrium that is fully efficient: the candidate who wins the election is the one preferred by a majority of the electorate under full information. By contrast, traditional systems such as Plurality and Runoff elections cannot cope satisfactorily with information imperfections.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 6695.

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Date of creation: Feb 2008
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:6695

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Keywords: Approval Voting; Information Aggregation; Multicandidate Elections; Poisson Games;

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References

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  1. Torun Dewan & David P. Myatt, 2006. "Leading the Party:Coordination, Direction, and Communication," STICERD - Political Economy and Public Policy Paper Series 22, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
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  3. GOERTZ, Johanna M.M. & MANIQUET, François, . "On the informational efficiency of simple scoring rules," CORE Discussion Papers RP -2326, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  4. Laurent Bouton, 2013. "A Theory of Strategic Voting in Runoff Elections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(4), pages 1248-88, June.
  5. Roger B. Myerson, 1994. "Population Uncertainty and Poisson Games," Discussion Papers 1102R, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
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  8. Roger B. Myerson, 1998. "Comparison of Scoring Rules in Poisson Voting Games," Discussion Papers 1214, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
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  14. Francesco Sinopoli & Bhaskar Dutta & Jean-François Laslier, 2006. "Approval voting: three examples," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer, vol. 35(1), pages 27-38, December.
  15. Brams, S.J. & Fishburn, P.C., 2003. "Going from Theory to Practice: The Mixed Success of Approval Voting," Working Papers 03-06, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  16. 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.
  17. 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.
  18. Timothy Feddersen & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 1996. "Convicting the Innocent: The Inferiority of Unanimous Jury Verdicts," Discussion Papers 1170, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  19. 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.
  20. David S. Ahny & Santiago Oliveros, 2013. "Approval Voting and Scoring Rules with Common Values," Economics Discussion Papers 732, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
  21. Robert J. Weber, 1995. "Approval Voting," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(1), pages 39-49, Winter.
  22. Laurent Bouton & Micael Castanheira De Moura, 2009. "The Condorcet-Duverger Trade-Off: swing voters and voting equilibria," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/159859, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  23. Matias Nuñez, 2010. "Condorcet Consistency of Approval Voting: a Counter Example in Large Poisson Games," Journal of Theoretical Politics, , vol. 22(1), pages 64-84, January.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Sébastien Courtin & Matias Nunez, 2013. "A Map of Approval Voting Equilibria Outcomes," THEMA Working Papers 2013-31, THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise.
  2. Matías Núñez & Jean Laslier, 2014. "Preference intensity representation: strategic overstating in large elections," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 42(2), pages 313-340, February.
  3. Martin Gregor, 2013. "The Optimal Ballot Structure for Double-Member Districts," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp493, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economic Institute, Prague.
  4. Sebastien Courtin & Matias Nunez, 2013. "Dominance Solvable Approval Voting Games," Working Papers hal-00914890, HAL.
  5. Laurent Bouton & Micael Castanheira De Moura & A. Llorente-Saguer, 2012. "Divided Majority and Information Aggregation: Theory and Experiment," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/136800, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  6. Laurent Bouton, 2013. "A Theory of Strategic Voting in Runoff Elections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(4), pages 1248-88, June.
  7. Bouton, Laurent & Gratton, Gabriele, 0. "Majority runoff elections: strategic voting and Duverger's hypothesis," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society.
  8. GOERTZ, Johanna & MANIQUET, François, 2013. "Large elections with multiple alternatives: a Condorcet Jury Theorem and inefficient equilibria," CORE Discussion Papers 2013023, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  9. David S. Ahny & Santiago Oliveros, 2013. "Approval Voting and Scoring Rules with Common Values," Economics Discussion Papers 732, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
  10. Francesco De Sinopoli & Claudia Meroni & Carlos Pimienta, 2014. "Strategic Stability in Poisson Games," Discussion Papers 2014-09, School of Economics, The University of New South Wales.
  11. MANIQUET, François & MORELLI, Massimo & ,, 2013. "Approval quorums dominate participation quorums," CORE Discussion Papers 2013054, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  12. Matias Nunez, 2013. "The Strategic Sincerity of Approval Voting," Post-Print hal-00917101, HAL.

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