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Hidden action, identification and organisation design


  • Wendelin Schnedler



Incentives often fail in inducing economic agents to engage in a desirable activity; implementability is restricted. What restricts implementability? When does re-organization help to overcome this restriction? This paper shows that any restriction of implementability is caused by an identification problem. It also describes organizations that can solve this identfication problem and provides conditions under which such organisations exist. Applying the findings to established and new moral hazard models yields insights into optimal organization design, uncovers the reason why certain organization designs, such as advocacy or specialization, overcome restricted implementability, and formalizes a widespread type of multi-tasking problem.

Suggested Citation

  • Wendelin Schnedler, 2010. "Hidden action, identification and organisation design," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 10/250, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
  • Handle: RePEc:bri:cmpowp:10/250

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Macho-Stadler, Ines & Perez-Castrillo, J. David, 2001. "An Introduction to the Economics of Information: Incentives and Contracts," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, edition 2, number 9780199243259, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jenny Kragl & Anja Schöttner, 2014. "Wage Floors, Imperfect Performance Measures, And Optimal Job Design," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 55, pages 525-550, May.

    More about this item


    moral hazard; hidden action; implementation; multi-tasking; identification by organisation design;

    JEL classification:

    • D86 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Economics of Contract Law
    • M52 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Compensation and Compensation Methods and Their Effects
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • M41 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Accounting - - - Accounting

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