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Eliciting information from multiple experts

  • Wolinsky, Asher

A decision maker has to elicit information from informed experts regarding the desirability of a certain action from experts who share similar preferences which differ significantly from those of the decision maker. The question is how much information the decision maker can elicit, despite the difference in interests. The focus here is on ways in which the decision maker can take advantage of the multiplicity of experts. if the decision maker cannot commit to a mechanism and there is no communication among the experts, then no useful information is elicited from the experts in the equilibrium. If the experts can be partitioned into groups such that the members of each group can communicate with each other before they report their information to the decision maker, then more information can be elicited. Obviously, if all experts are allowed to communicate, they can be induced to reveal the relevant information, at least, when their aggregate information makes it desirable for them to undertake the project. The more interesting observation is that, if communication among the experts can be restricted to certain subsets, then even more information can be elicited. Finally, if the decision maker can commit to a mechanism, the information elicited in some cases is sufficient to implement the decision maker's best outcome in all but one state. All these observation make straightforward use of the idea that experts choose their report with the understanding that it matters only when they are pivotal.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Games and Economic Behavior.

Volume (Year): 41 (2002)
Issue (Month): 1 (October)
Pages: 141-160

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Handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:41:y:2002:i:1:p:141-160
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622836

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  1. Helmut Bester & Roland Strausz, . "Imperfect Commitment and the Revelation Principle," Papers 004, Departmental Working Papers.
  2. Vijay Krishna & John Morgan, 1999. "A Model of Expertise," Game Theory and Information 9902003, EconWPA.
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  3. Crawford, Vincent P & Sobel, Joel, 1982. "Strategic Information Transmission," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1431-51, November.
  4. Marco Battaglini, 2002. "Multiple Referrals and Multidimensional Cheap Talk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(4), pages 1379-1401, July.
  5. Austen-Smith David, 1993. "Interested Experts and Policy Advice: Multiple Referrals under Open Rule," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 3-43, January.
  6. Forges, Francoise, 1990. "Universal Mechanisms," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(6), pages 1341-64, November.
  7. Bester, Helmut & Strausz, Roland, 2001. "Contracting with Imperfect Commitment and the Revelation Principle: The Single Agent Case," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(4), pages 1077-98, July.
  8. Timothy Feddersen & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 1996. "Convicting the Innocent: The Inferiority of Unanimous Jury Verdicts," Discussion Papers 1170, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
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