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Reliability and Responsibility: A Theory of Endogenous Commitment


  • Matteo Triossi


A common assumption in Political Science literature is policy commitment: candidates maintain their electoral promises. We drop such assumption and we show that costless electoral campaign can be an effective way of transmitting information to voters. The result is robust to relevant equilibrium refinements. An unavoidable proportion of ambiguous politicians emerges.

Suggested Citation

  • Matteo Triossi, 2006. "Reliability and Responsibility: A Theory of Endogenous Commitment," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 21, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
  • Handle: RePEc:cca:wpaper:21

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Navin Kartik, 2005. "Information Transmission with Cheap and Almost-Cheap Talk," NajEcon Working Paper Reviews 666156000000000650,
    2. Callander, Steven & Wilkie, Simon, 2007. "Lies, damned lies, and political campaigns," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 262-286, August.
    3. B. Douglas Bernheim & Sergei Severinov, 2003. "Bequests as Signals: An Explanation for the Equal Division Puzzle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(4), pages 733-764, August.
    4. Enriqueta Aragones & Thomas R. Palfrey & Andrew Postlewaite, 2005. "Reputation and Rhetoric in Elections," PIER Working Paper Archive 05-021, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
    5. Banks, Jeffrey S., 1990. "A model of electoral competition with incomplete information," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 309-325, April.
    6. John Ferejohn, 1986. "Incumbent performance and electoral control," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 50(1), pages 5-25, January.
    7. Banks, Jeffrey S & Sobel, Joel, 1987. "Equilibrium Selection in Signaling Games," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(3), pages 647-661, May.
    8. Crawford, Vincent P & Sobel, Joel, 1982. "Strategic Information Transmission," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1431-1451, November.
    9. Krishna, Vijay & Morgan, John, 2004. "The art of conversation: eliciting information from experts through multi-stage communication," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 117(2), pages 147-179, August.
    10. Alesina, Alberto, 1988. "Credibility and Policy Convergence in a Two-Party System with Rational Voters," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(4), pages 796-805, September.
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    More about this item


    Information Transmission; Electoral Campaign; Endogenous Commitment.;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism
    • C73 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Stochastic and Dynamic Games; Evolutionary Games

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