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A Simple Inducement Scheme to Overcome Adoption Externalities

  • In-Uck Park

    ()

Potential customers of network commodities face coordination problems due to adoption externalities that give rise to multiple, Pareto-ranked equilibria. We investigate the extent to which the coordination problem can be resolved by inducement schemes when agents’ preferences are private information. Specifically, we show that all symmetric “cut-off strategy” profiles (agents adopt if and only if their type is below a threshold) constitute the set of profiles that can be implemented as a unique equilibrium under an inducement scheme. We derive the ex ante cost of implementing each such profile. Furthermore, we fully characterize the set of inducement schemes that I) implement each such profile and ii) have the following simple form: each scheme specifies a fixed fee that every adopter pays, and a fixed gross subsidy/prize to be randomly allocated to (or evenly split among) the adopters. We discuss the implications of these findings on the design of optimal schemes for different network organizers, namely, private entrepreneurs and public entities.

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File URL: http://www.bris.ac.uk/Depts/CMPO/workingpapers/wp85.pdf
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Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK in its series The Centre for Market and Public Organisation with number 03/085.

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Length: 17 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bri:cmpowp:03/085
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  1. Leslie M. Marx & Steven A. Matthews, 1997. "Dynamic Voluntary Contribution to a Public Project," Discussion Papers 1188, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  2. Dybvig, Philip H. & Spatt, Chester S., 1983. "Adoption externalities as public goods," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 231-247, March.
  3. Gradstein, Mark, 1992. "Time Dynamics and Incomplete Information in the Private Provision of Public Goods," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(3), pages 581-97, June.
  4. Gale, D., 1992. "Dynamic Coordiantion Games," Papers 13, Boston University - Department of Economics.
  5. Bagnoli, Mark & Lipman, Barton L, 1989. "Provision of Public Goods: Fully Implementing the Core through Private Contributions," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 56(4), pages 583-601, October.
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