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Bidding for Army Career Specialties: Improving the ROTC Branching Mechanism

  • Tayfun S�nmez

Motivated by the low retention rates of US Military Academy and Reserve Officer Training Corps graduates, the Army recently introduced incentives programs in which cadets could bid 3 years of additional service obligation to obtain higher priority for their desired branches. The full potential of this incentives program is not utilized because of the ROTC’s deficient matching mechanism. I propose a design that eliminates these shortcomings and mitigates several policy problems the Army has identified. In contrast to the ROTC mechanism, my design utilizes market principles more extensively, and it is a hybrid between a market mechanism and a priority-based allocation mechanism.

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File URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/pdfplus/10.1086/669915
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File URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/full/10.1086/669915
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Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Political Economy.

Volume (Year): 121 (2013)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 186 - 219

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jpolec:doi:10.1086/669915
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JPE/

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  1. Caterina Calsamiglia & Guillaume Haeringer & Flip Klijn, 2010. "Constrained School Choice: An Experimental Study," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(4), pages 1860-74, September.
  2. Onur Kesten, 2010. "School Choice with Consent," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 125(3), pages 1297-1348, August.
  3. Alvin E. Roth & Tayfun Sonmez & M. Utku Unver, 2003. "Kidney Exchange," NBER Working Papers 10002, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Atila Abdulkadiroglu & Tayfun Sönmez, 2003. "School Choice: A Mechanism Design Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(3), pages 729-747, June.
  5. Tayfun Sönmez & Alvin E. Roth & M. Utku Ünver, 2007. "Efficient Kidney Exchange: Coincidence of Wants in Markets with Compatibility-Based Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(3), pages 828-851, June.
  6. Aytek Erdil & Haluk Ergin, 2008. "What's the Matter with Tie-Breaking? Improving Efficiency in School Choice," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 669-89, June.
  7. Parag A. Pathak & Tayfun Sönmez, 2013. "School Admissions Reform in Chicago and England: Comparing Mechanisms by Their Vulnerability to Manipulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(1), pages 80-106, February.
  8. Kelso, Alexander S, Jr & Crawford, Vincent P, 1982. "Job Matching, Coalition Formation, and Gross Substitutes," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1483-1504, November.
  9. Atila Abdulkadiroğlu & Parag A. Pathak & Alvin E. Roth & Tayfun S�nmez, 2005. "The Boston Public School Match," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 368-371, May.
  10. Benjamin Edelman & Michael Ostrovsky & Michael Schwarz, 2005. "Internet Advertising and the Generalized Second Price Auction: Selling Billions of Dollars Worth of Keywords," NBER Working Papers 11765, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Crawford, Vincent P & Knoer, Elsie Marie, 1981. "Job Matching with Heterogeneous Firms and Workers," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(2), pages 437-50, March.
  12. Guillaume Haeringer & Flip Klijn, 2008. "Constrained School Choice," Working Papers 294, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  13. Eric Budish & Estelle Cantillon, 2012. "The Multi-unit Assignment Problem: Theory and Evidence from Course Allocation at Harvard," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(5), pages 2237-71, August.
  14. Varian, Hal R., 2007. "Position auctions," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 25(6), pages 1163-1178, December.
  15. Tayfun Sönmez & M. Utku Ünver, 2005. "Course Bidding at Business Schools," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 618, Boston College Department of Economics.
  16. Eric Budish, 2011. "The Combinatorial Assignment Problem: Approximate Competitive Equilibrium from Equal Incomes," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 119(6), pages 1061 - 1103.
  17. Alvin E. Roth & Tayfun Sonmez & M. Utku Unver, 2004. "Pairwise Kidney Exchange," NBER Working Papers 10698, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Parag A. Pathak & Tayfun Sonmez, 2008. "Leveling the Playing Field: Sincere and Sophisticated Players in the Boston Mechanism," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1636-52, September.
  19. M. Utku �nver, 2010. "Dynamic Kidney Exchange," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(1), pages 372-414.
  20. Orhan Aygün & Tayfun Sönmez, 2012. "Matching with Contracts: The Critical Role of Irrelevance of Rejected Contracts," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 804, Boston College Department of Economics.
  21. Tayfun Sönmez & Tobias B. Switzer, 2013. "Matching With (Branch‐of‐Choice) Contracts at the United States Military Academy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 81(2), pages 451-488, 03.
  22. Tayfun Sönmez & M. Utku Ünver, 2009. "Matching, Allocation, and Exchange of Discrete Resources," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 717, Boston College Department of Economics.
  23. John William Hatfield & Fuhito Kojima, 2008. "Matching with Contracts: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 1189-94, June.
  24. Federico Echenique, 2012. "Contracts versus Salaries in Matching," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 594-601, February.
  25. Orhan Aygün & Tayfun Sönmez, 2012. "The Importance of Irrelevance of Rejected Contracts in Matching under Weakened Substitutes Conditions," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 805, Boston College Department of Economics.
  26. Tayfun Sönmez & Tobias B. Switzer, 2011. "Matching with (Branch-of-Choice) Contracts at United States Military Academy," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 782, Boston College Department of Economics.
  27. Kominers, Scott Duke, 2012. "On the correspondence of contracts to salaries in (many-to-many) matching," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 75(2), pages 984-989.
  28. Haluk Ergin & Tayfun Sönmez, 2005. "Games of School Choice under the Boston Mechanism," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 619, Boston College Department of Economics.
  29. Gul, Faruk & Stacchetti, Ennio, 2000. "The English Auction with Differentiated Commodities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 92(1), pages 66-95, May.
  30. Hatfield, John William & Kojima, Fuhito, 2010. "Substitutes and stability for matching with contracts," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 145(5), pages 1704-1723, September.
  31. Balinski, Michel & Sonmez, Tayfun, 1999. "A Tale of Two Mechanisms: Student Placement," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 73-94, January.
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