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An Efficiency Rationale for Bundling of Public Goods

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Abstract

This paper studies the role of bundling in the efficient provision of excludable public goods. We show that bundling in the provision of unrelated public goods can enhance social welfare. With a large number of goods and agents, first best can be approximated with pure bundling. For a parametric class of problems with binary valuations, we characterize the optimal mechanism, and show that bundling alleviates the free riding problem in large economies and decreases the extent of use exclusions. Both results are related to the idea that bundling makes it possible to reduce the incidence of exclusions because the variance in the relevant valuations decreases.

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File URL: http://cowles.econ.yale.edu/P/cd/d14a/d1441.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University in its series Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers with number 1441.

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Length: 52 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cwl:cwldpp:1441

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Postal: Cowles Foundation, Yale University, Box 208281, New Haven, CT 06520-8281 USA

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Keywords: Public goods provision; Bundling; Exclusion;

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References

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  1. Myerson, Roger B. & Satterthwaite, Mark A., 1983. "Efficient mechanisms for bilateral trading," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 265-281, April.
  2. Matthew O. Jackson & Hugo F. Sonnenschein, 2003. "The Linking of Collective Decisions and Efficiency," Microeconomics 0303007, EconWPA.
  3. Roger B. Myerson, 1978. "Optimal Auction Design," Discussion Papers 362, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
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  6. Mailath, George J & Postlewaite, Andrew, 1990. "Asymmetric Information Bargaining Problems with Many Agents," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(3), pages 351-67, July.
  7. Dana Jr. James D., 1993. "The Organization and Scope of Agents: Regulating Multiproduct Industries," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 59(2), pages 288-310, April.
  8. Cremer, Jacques & McLean, Richard P, 1988. "Full Extraction of the Surplus in Bayesian and Dominant Strategy Auctions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(6), pages 1247-57, November.
  9. Peter Cramton & Robert Gibbons & Paul Klemperer, 1987. "Dissolving a Partnership Efficiently," Papers of Peter Cramton 87econ, University of Maryland, Department of Economics - Peter Cramton, revised 09 Jun 1998.
  10. Hellwig, Martin F., 2005. "A utilitarian approach to the provision and pricing of excludable public goods," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(11-12), pages 1981-2003, December.
  11. Norman,P., 2000. "Efficient mechanisms for public goods with use exclusions," Working papers 15, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  12. McAfee, R Preston & McMillan, John & Whinston, Michael D, 1989. "Multiproduct Monopoly, Commodity Bundling, and Correlation of Values," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 104(2), pages 371-83, May.
  13. Martin F. Hellwig, 2003. "Public-Good Provision with Many Participants," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 70(3), pages 589-614, 07.
  14. Paul Milgrom & Robert Weber, 1981. "Distributional Strategies for Games with Incomplete Information," Discussion Papers 428R, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  15. Adams, William James & Yellen, Janet L, 1976. "Commodity Bundling and the Burden of Monopoly," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 90(3), pages 475-98, August.
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Cited by:
  1. Hitoshi Matsushima & Koichi Miyazaki & Nobuyuki Yagi, 2010. "Role of Linking Mechanisms in Multitask Agency with Hidden Information," CARF F-Series CARF-F-209, Center for Advanced Research in Finance, Faculty of Economics, The University of Tokyo.
  2. Fang,H. & Norman,P., 2003. "To bundle or not to bundle," Working papers 18, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  3. Hanming Fang & Peter Norman, 2010. "Optimal Provision of Multiple Excludable Public Goods," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(4), pages 1-37, November.
  4. Hellwig, Martin F., 2005. "A utilitarian approach to the provision and pricing of excludable public goods," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(11-12), pages 1981-2003, December.
  5. Suman Ghosh & Alexander Karaivanov & Mandar Oak, 2005. "A Case for Bundling Public Goods Contributions?," Working Papers 05005, Department of Economics, College of Business, Florida Atlantic University.
  6. Hitoshi Matsushima & Koichi Miyazaki & Nobuyuki Yagi, 2006. "Role of Linking Mechanisms in Multitask Agency with Hidden Information ( Revised as CARF-F-209(2010) )," CARF F-Series CARF-F-059, Center for Advanced Research in Finance, Faculty of Economics, The University of Tokyo.
  7. Martin Hellwig, 2004. "Optimal Income Taxation, Public-Goods Provision and Public-Sector Pricing: A Contribution to the Foundations of Public Economics," Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2004_14, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods.

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