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Conclave

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  • Kwiek, Maksymilian

Abstract

A committee is choosing between two alternatives. If the required supermajority is not reached, voting is repeated indefinitely, although there is a cost to delay. Under suitable assumptions the equilibrium analysis provides a sharp prediction. The result can be interpreted as a generalization of the seminal median voter theorem known from the simple majority case. If a supermajority is required instead, the power to select the outcome moves from the median voter to the more extreme voters. Normative analysis indicates that, in the utilitarian sense, simple majority is strictly inferior to some supermajorities. Even if unanimity is a bad voting rule, voting rules close to unanimity may be efficient. The more likely it is to have very many almost indifferent voters and some very opinionated ones, the more stringent a supermajority is required for efficiency.

Suggested Citation

  • Kwiek, Maksymilian, 2014. "Conclave," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 70(C), pages 258-275.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:70:y:2014:i:c:p:258-275
    DOI: 10.1016/j.euroecorev.2014.05.004
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Supermajority; Qualified majority; Repeated voting; Conclave; War of attrition;

    JEL classification:

    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions

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