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Information acquisition in conflicts

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  • Morath, Florian
  • Münster, Johannes
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    Abstract

    This paper considers incentives for information acquisition ahead of conflicts. We characterize the (unique) equilibrium of the all-pay auction between two players with one-sided asymmetric information. The type of one player is common knowledge. The type of the other player is drawn from a continuous distribution and is private information of this player. We then use our results to study information acquisition prior to an all-pay auction. Depending on the cost of information, only one player may invest in information. If the decision to acquire information is observable for the opponent, but not the information received, one-sided asymmetric information can occur endogenously in equilibrium. Moreover, compared with the first best, information acquisition is excessive. In contrast, with open or covert information acquisition, the cut-off values for equilibrium information acquisition are as in the first best. -- Dieser Aufsatz untersucht Anreize für Informationsbeschaffung im Vorfeld von Konflikten. Zunächst charakterisieren wir das (eindeutige) Gleichgewicht eines vollständig diskriminierenden Wettkampfs (all-pay auction) zwischen zwei Kontrahenten mit einseitig asymmetrischer Information darüber, wie die Kontrahenten den Gewinn bewerten: Die Bewertung eines Spielers ist allgemein bekannt, und die Bewertung des anderen Spielers ist gemäß einer stetigen Verteilungsfunktion verteilt und private Information dieses Spielers. Anschließend verwenden wir unsere Ergebnisse, um Informationsbeschaffung im Vorfeld einer all-pay auction zu untersuchen. Abhängig von den Kosten der Informationsbeschaffung investiert lediglich ein Spieler in Information. Falls die Entscheidung über Informationsbeschaffung für den Gegenspieler beobachtbar ist, jedoch nicht die Information selbst, kann einseitig asymmetrische Information im Gleichgewicht der Entscheidungen über Informationsbeschaffung entstehen. Darüber hinaus investieren die Spieler verglichen mit dem Wohlfahrtsoptimum zu viel in Information. Im Gegensatz dazu ist die Informationsbeschaffung effizient, falls entweder gekaufte Information offen beobachtbar ist oder weder die Information noch die Entscheidungen über deren Beschaffung durch den Kontrahenten beobachtet werden können.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB) in its series Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Market Processes and Governance with number SP II 2009-10.

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    Date of creation: 2009
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    Handle: RePEc:zbw:wzbmpg:spii200910

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    Related research

    Keywords: All-pay auctions; conflicts; contests; information acquisition; asymmetric information;

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