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Information acquisition and transparency in committees

Author

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  • Hans Gersbach

    ()

  • Volker Hahn

    ()

Abstract

We study a two-period model of committee decision-making where members differ in their levels of efficiency. They may acquire costly information that enhances their ability to make a correct decision. We focus on the impact of transparency. We show that the principal's initial utility is higher under transparency, because members exert more effort, which makes correct decisions more likely. The principal also benefits from transparency later, unless transparency leads to an alignment of the signal qualities of highly efficient and less efficient committee members. In general, committee members are harmed by transparency.
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Suggested Citation

  • Hans Gersbach & Volker Hahn, 2012. "Information acquisition and transparency in committees," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer;Game Theory Society, vol. 41(2), pages 427-453, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:jogath:v:41:y:2012:i:2:p:427-453
    DOI: 10.1007/s00182-011-0295-5
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Andrea Prat, 2005. "The Wrong Kind of Transparency," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(3), pages 862-877, June.
    2. Gerling, Kerstin & Gruner, Hans Peter & Kiel, Alexandra & Schulte, Elisabeth, 2005. "Information acquisition and decision making in committees: A survey," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 563-597, September.
    3. Gilat Levy, 2007. "Decision Making in Committees: Transparency, Reputation, and Voting Rules," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(1), pages 150-168, March.
    4. Hans Gersbach & Volker Hahn, 2004. "Voting Transparency, Conflicting Interests, And The Appointment Of Central Bankers," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 16, pages 321-345, November.
    5. Bauke Visser & Otto H. Swank, 2007. "On Committees of Experts," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(1), pages 337-372.
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    7. Kaushik Mukhopadhaya, 2003. "Jury Size and the Free Rider Problem," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(1), pages 24-44, April.
    8. Hans Gersbach & Volker Hahn, 2008. "Should the individual voting records of central bankers be published?," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 30(4), pages 655-683, May.
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    10. Gerardi, Dino & Yariv, Leeat, 2008. "Information acquisition in committees," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 436-459, March.
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    12. Hahn, Volker, 2008. "Committees, sequential voting and transparency," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 56(3), pages 366-385, November.
    13. Nicola Persico, 2004. "Committee Design with Endogenous Information," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(1), pages 165-191.
    14. Anne Sibert, 2003. "Monetary Policy Committees: Individual and Collective Reputations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(3), pages 649-665.
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    18. John Fingleton, 2005. "Career Concerns of Bargainers," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(1), pages 179-204, April.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Kedan, Danielle & Stuart, Rebecca, 2014. "Central Bank Communications: A Comparative Study," Quarterly Bulletin Articles, Central Bank of Ireland, pages 89-104, April.
    2. Belke, Ansgar, 2017. "Central bank communication: Managing expectations through the monetary dialogue," Ruhr Economic Papers 692, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    3. Svensson, Lars E O, 2009. "Transparency under Flexible Inflation Targeting: Experiences and Challenges," CEPR Discussion Papers 7213, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Stephen Eliot Hansen & Michael McMahon & Andrea Prat, 2014. "Transparency and deliberation within the FOMC: A computational linguistics approach," Economics Working Papers 1425, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
    5. Otto H. Swank & Bauke Visser, 2007. "Is Transparency to no avail? Committee Decision-making, Pre-meetings, and Credible Deals," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 07-055/1, Tinbergen Institute.
    6. Carsten Hefeker & Blandine Zimmer, 2015. "Optimal Conservatism and Collective Monetary Policymaking under Uncertainty," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 26(2), pages 259-278, April.
    7. Volker Hahn, 2012. "On the Optimal Size of Committees of Experts," Working Paper Series of the Department of Economics, University of Konstanz 2012-24, Department of Economics, University of Konstanz.
    8. Kedan, Danielle & Stuart, Rebecca, 2014. "Central Bank Minutes," Economic Letters 12/EL/14, Central Bank of Ireland.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Committees; Career concerns; Experts; Transparency; Information acquisition; D71;

    JEL classification:

    • D70 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - General

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