Let Them Burn Money: Making Elections More Informative
AbstractA standard election in which each voter chooses a single alternative permits voters little scope to express the intensity of their preferences. Allowing more complex statements of preferences may not alleviate the problem if voters behave strategically, as only certain statements are credible. I consider the implications of allowing voters to burn money as part of the voting procedure. In an environment with two alternatives and voters with interdependent values, I find necessary and sufficient conditions for all choice functions that are minimally responsive to voter preferences to be implementable with money burning. Furthermore, I show that any choice rule that treats ex-ante identical voters symmetrically can be implemented with an arbitrarily small amount of money burnt per voter as the set of voters is replicated. Thus, for a large electorate, the informational gains of money burning can be reaped at virtually no social cost.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Rutgers University, Department of Economics in its series Departmental Working Papers with number 200512.
Date of creation: 15 Nov 2005
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Elections; Voting Mechanisms; Interdependent Values; Information Aggregation;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D80 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - General
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2006-01-24 (All new papers)
- NEP-CDM-2006-01-24 (Collective Decision-Making)
- NEP-POL-2006-01-24 (Positive Political Economics)
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