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Competition amongst contests


Author Info

  • Ghazala Azmat
  • Marc Möller


This article analyses the allocation of prizes in contests. While existing models consider a single contest with an exogenously given set of players, in our model several contests compete for participants. As a consequence, prizes not only induce incentive effects but also participation effects. We show that contests that aim to maximize players’ aggregate effort will award their entire prize budget to the winner. In contrast, multiple prizes will be awarded in contests that aim to maximize participation and the share of the prize budget awarded to the winner increases in the contests’ randomness. We also provide empirical evidence for this relationship using data from professional road running. In addition, we show that prize structures might be used to screen between players of differing ability.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 1072.

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Date of creation: Feb 2008
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Handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:1072

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Keywords: Contests; allocation of prizes; participation;

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Cited by:
  1. Leuven, Edwin & Oosterbeek, Hessel & van der Klaauw, Bas, 2010. "Splitting Tournaments," CEPR Discussion Papers, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers 8016, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Ghazala Azmat & Marc Möller, 2012. "The Distribution of Talent across Contests," Working Papers 600, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  3. Prüfer, J., 2009. "Semi-Public Contests," Discussion Paper, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research 2009-33, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  4. John Morgan & Dana Sisak & Felix Vardy, 2012. "On the Merits of Meritocracy," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 12-077/1, Tinbergen Institute.
  5. Matthias Dahm & Patricia Esteve, . "Affirmative Action through Extra Prizes," Discussion Papers, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham 2014-08, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.


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