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Sequential Voting with Abstention

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  • Battaglini, Marco

    (Princeton U)

Abstract

Dekel and Piccione (2000) have proven that information cascades do not necessarily affect the properties of information aggregation in sequential elections: under standard conditions, any symmetric equilibrium of a simultaneous voting mechanism is also an equilibrium of the correspondent sequential mechanism. We show that when voters can abstain, these results are sensitive to the introduction of an arbitrarily small cost of voting: the set of equilibria in the two mechanisms are generally disjoint; and the informative properties of the equilibrium sets can be ranked. If an appropriate q-rule is chosen, when the cost of voting is small the unique symmetric equilibrium of the simultaneous voting mechanism dominates all equilibria of the sequential mechanism.

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Paper provided by Princeton University, Research Program in Political Economy in its series Papers with number 05-19-2004.

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Date of creation: May 2004
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Handle: RePEc:ecl:prirpe:05-19-2004

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  1. Sushil Bikhchandani & David Hirshleifer & Ivo Welch, 2010. "A theory of Fads, Fashion, Custom and cultural change as informational Cascades," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1193, David K. Levine.
  2. Eddie Dekel & Michele Piccione, 2000. "Sequential Voting Procedures in Symmetric Binary Elections," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(1), pages 34-55, February.
  3. Timothy Feddersen & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 1997. "Voting Behavior and Information Aggregation in Elections With Private Information," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1560, David K. Levine.
  4. Anthony Downs, 1957. "An Economic Theory of Political Action in a Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65, pages 135.
  5. Banerjee, Abhijit V, 1992. "A Simple Model of Herd Behavior," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(3), pages 797-817, August.
  6. Eddie Dekel & Michele Piccione, 1997. "On the Equivalence of Simultaneous and Sequential Binary Elections," Discussion Papers 1206, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
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