A Theory of Conservatism
A free-rider problem arises when a group choice between two alternatives has to be made on the basis of privately collected evidence, leading to insufficient effort in gathering evidence and an ex ante welfare loss for the group. To alleviate the free-rider problem, the group can commit to a "conservative" rule, whereby the decision is made against the alternative favored by the group's preference or prior when evidence supports it but is not preponderant. Optimal conservatism increases private incentives to gather evidence and improves the quality of the group decision. My result explains why sometimes groups appear overly cautious toward favored alternatives.
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- Richard J. Gilbert & Paul Klemperer, 2000.
"An Equilibrium Theory of Rationing,"
RAND Journal of Economics,
The RAND Corporation, vol. 31(1), pages 1-21, Spring.
- Gilbert, Richard & Klemperer, Paul, 1993. "An Equilibrium Theory of Rationing," CEPR Discussion Papers 805, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Richard J. Gilbert & Paul Klemperer, 1999. "An Equilibrium Theory of Rationing," Microeconomics 9907005, EconWPA.
- Dearden, James & Ickes, Barry W & Samuelson, Larry, 1990. "To Innovate or Not to Innovate: Incentives and Innovation in Hierarchies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(5), pages 1105-1124, December.
- Dearden, J. & Ickes, B.W. & Samuelson, L., 1988. "To Innovate Or Not To Innovate: Incentives And Innovation In Hierarchies," Papers 9-88-4, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
- Dearden, J. & Ickes, B.W. & Samuelson, L., 1988. "To Innovate Or Not To Innovate: Incentives And Innovation In Hierarchies," Papers 0-88-1, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
- Prendergast, Canice, 1993. "A Theory of "Yes Men."," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(4), pages 757-770, September. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)
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