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Coordination in a Mobile World


  • Jakub Steiner


We study coordination failures in many simultaneously occurring coordination problems called projects. Players encounter one of these projects, but have an outside option to search for another of the projects. Drawing on the global games approach, we show that such a mobile game has a unique equilibrium which allows us to examine comparative statics. The endogeneity of the outside option value and of the search activity leads to non-monotonicity of welfare with respect to search costs; high mobility may hurt players. Moreover, outcomes of the mobile game are remarkably robust to changes in the exogenous parameters. In contrast to the “static” benchmark global game without a search option, successful coordination is frequent in the mobile game even for extremely poor distributions of economic fundamentals, and coordination failures are common even for extremely good distributions. The strategic consequences of the search option are robust to various modifications of the model.

Suggested Citation

  • Jakub Steiner, 2006. "Coordination in a Mobile World," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp295, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
  • Handle: RePEc:cer:papers:wp295

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Byeongju Jeong, 2003. "The Welfare Effects of Mobility Restrictions," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 6(3), pages 685-696, July.
    2. Steiner, Jakub, 2008. "Coordination of mobile labor," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 139(1), pages 25-46, March.
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    12. Oechssler, Jorg, 1997. "Decentralization and the coordination problem," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 119-135, January.
    13. Steiner, Jakub, 2008. "Coordination cycles," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 308-327, May.
    14. Itay Goldstein & Ady Pauzner, 2005. "Demand-Deposit Contracts and the Probability of Bank Runs," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(3), pages 1293-1327, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Flavio Toxvaerd & Chryssi Giannitsarou, 2004. "Recursive global games," Money Macro and Finance (MMF) Research Group Conference 2003 104, Money Macro and Finance Research Group.
    2. Antoine Loeper & Jakub Steiner & Colin Stewart, 2014. "Influential Opinion Leaders," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 124(581), pages 1147-1167, December.
    3. Junichi Fujimoto, 2014. "Speculative attacks with multiple targets," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 57(1), pages 89-132, September.
    4. Laurent Mathevet & Jakub Steiner, 2012. "Sand in the Wheels: A Dynamic Global-Game Approach," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp459, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
    5. Steiner, Jakub, 2008. "Coordination of mobile labor," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 139(1), pages 25-46, March.
    6. Dasgupta, Amil, 2007. "Coordination and delay in global games," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 134(1), pages 195-225, May.

    More about this item


    Coordination; Equilibrium Uniqueness; Global Games; Search; Mobility; Globalization;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness

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