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Majority rule when voters like to win

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  • Callander, Steven

Abstract

I analyze symmetric majority rule voting equilibria when voters wish to elect the better candidate and to vote for the winner. When voters care only about the winning candidate (the standard formulation) a unique responsive equilibrium exists. The addition of a desire to win creates multiple equilibria, some with unusual properties. In most of these equilibria information is not aggregated effectively, and I uncover the novel possibility of negative information aggregation in which information aggregated in equilibrium is used to select the worse rather than the better candidate. I then characterize the efficiency of optimal equilibria as the population becomes large and show that a discontinuity arises in the information aggregation capabilities of the majority rule voting mechanism: in elections without a dominant front-running candidate the better candidate is almost surely elected, whereas in races with a front-runner information cannot be effectively aggregated in equilibrium.

Suggested Citation

  • Callander, Steven, 2008. "Majority rule when voters like to win," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 393-420, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:64:y:2008:i:2:p:393-420
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:bpj:bejtec:v:18:y:2018:i:1:p:18:n:15 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Bouton, Laurent & Castanheira, Micael & Llorente-Saguer, Aniol, 2016. "Divided majority and information aggregation: Theory and experiment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 134(C), pages 114-128.
    3. Antoine Loeper & Jakub Steiner & Colin Stewart, 2014. "Influential Opinion Leaders," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 124(581), pages 1147-1167, December.
    4. Emilio Barucci & Marco Tolotti, 2012. "Identity, reputation and social interaction with an application to sequential voting," Journal of Economic Interaction and Coordination, Springer;Society for Economic Science with Heterogeneous Interacting Agents, vol. 7(1), pages 79-98, May.
    5. Chia-Hui Chen & Junichiro Ishida, 2011. "Seeking Harmony Amidst Diversity: Consensus Building with Network Externalities," ISER Discussion Paper 0826, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
    6. Elena Panova, 2011. "A Passion for Democracy," CIRANO Working Papers 2011s-47, CIRANO.
    7. Panova, Elena, 2015. "A passion for voting," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 90(C), pages 44-65.
    8. Marina Agranov & Jacob K. Goeree & Julian Romero & Leeat Yariv, 2012. "What makes voters turn out: the effects of polls and beliefs," ECON - Working Papers 067, Department of Economics - University of Zurich.
    9. Midjord, Rune & Rodríguez Barraquer, Tomás & Valasek, Justin, 2013. "Over-caution of large committees of experts," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Economics of Change SP II 2013-313, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
    10. Cesar Martinelli & Thomas R. Palfrey, 2017. "Communication and Information in Games of Collective Decision: A Survey of Experimental Results," Working Papers 1065, George Mason University, Interdisciplinary Center for Economic Science.
    11. Balankin, Alexander S. & Martínez Cruz, Miguel Ángel & Martínez, Alfredo Trejo, 2011. "Effect of initial concentration and spatial heterogeneity of active agent distribution on opinion dynamics," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 390(21), pages 3876-3887.
    12. Dino Gerardi & Margaret A. McConnell & Julian Romero & Leeat Yariv, 2016. "Get Out The (Costly) Vote: Institutional Design For Greater Participation," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 54(4), pages 1963-1979, October.
    13. repec:eee:gamebe:v:104:y:2017:i:c:p:430-443 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. repec:eee:pubeco:v:154:y:2017:i:c:p:34-48 is not listed on IDEAS

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