AbstractA robust feature of models of electoral competition between two opportunistic, purely office-motivated parties is that both parties become indistinguishable in equilibrium. I this short note, I show that this strong connection between the office motivation of parties and their equilibrium choice of identical platforms depends on the following two - possibly counterfactual - assumptions: 1. Issue spaces are uni-dimensional and 2. Parties are unitary actors whose preferences can be represented by expected utility functions. The main goal here is to provide an example of a two-party model in which parties offer substantially different platforms in equilibrium even though no exogenous asymmetries are assumed. In this example, some voters’ preferences over the 2-dimensional issue space are assumed to exhibit non-convexities and parties evaluate their actions with respect to a set of beliefs on the electorate.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods in its series Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods with number 2011_25.
Date of creation: Oct 2011
Date of revision:
Downs model; Games with Incomplete Preferences; Knightian Uncertainty; Uncertainty Aversion; Platform Divergence;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
- D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
- C79 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Other
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2012-01-25 (All new papers)
- NEP-CDM-2012-01-25 (Collective Decision-Making)
- NEP-POL-2012-01-25 (Positive Political Economics)
- NEP-UPT-2012-01-25 (Utility Models & Prospect Theory)
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