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Simple centrifugal incentives in spatial competition

Author

Listed:
  • Dimitrios Xefteris

    () (University of Cyprus)

  • Didier Laussel

    (Aix-Marseille University)

  • Michel Le Breton

    (University of Toulouse Capitole)

Abstract

Abstract This paper studies the effects of introducing centrifugal incentives in an otherwise standard Downsian model of electoral competition. First, we demonstrate that a symmetric equilibrium is guaranteed to exist when centrifugal incentives are induced by any kind of partial voter participation (such as abstention due to indifference, abstention due to alienation, etc.) and, then, we argue that: (a) this symmetric equilibrium is in pure strategies, and it is hence convergent, only when centrifugal incentives are sufficiently weak on both sides; (b) when centrifugal incentives are strong on both sides (when, for example, a lot of voters abstain when they are sufficiently indifferent between the two candidates) players use mixed strategies—the stronger the centrifugal incentives, the larger the probability weight that players assign to locations near the extremes; and (c) when centrifugal incentives are strong on one side only—say for example only on the right—the support of players’ mixed strategies contain all policies except from those that are sufficiently close to the left extreme.

Suggested Citation

  • Dimitrios Xefteris & Didier Laussel & Michel Le Breton, 2017. "Simple centrifugal incentives in spatial competition," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer;Game Theory Society, vol. 46(2), pages 357-381, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:jogath:v:46:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s00182-016-0540-z
    DOI: 10.1007/s00182-016-0540-z
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Martin J. Osborne, 1995. "Spatial Models of Political Competition under Plurality Rule: A Survey of Some Explanations of the Number of Candidates and the Positions They Take," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 28(2), pages 261-301, May.
    2. Xefteris, Dimitrios, 2013. "Equilibria in unidirectional spatial models," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 119(2), pages 146-149.
    3. Samuel Merrill III & James Adams, 2002. "Centrifugal Incentives in Multi-Candidate Elections," Journal of Theoretical Politics, , vol. 14(3), pages 275-300, July.
    4. Glazer, Amihai & Grofman, Bernard & Owen, Guillermo, 1998. "A Neo-Downsian Model of Group-Oriented Voting and Racial Backlash," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 97(1-2), pages 23-34, October.
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    8. Enriqueta Aragonès & Dimitrios Xefteris, 2017. "Imperfectly Informed Voters And Strategic Extremism," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 58, pages 439-471, May.
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    10. Xefteris, Dimitrios, 2015. "Symmetric zero-sum games with only asymmetric equilibria," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 122-125.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Electoral competition; Spatial model; Downs; Mixed equilibria; Centrifugal incentives; Abstention;

    JEL classification:

    • D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior

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