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Three Prominent Tournament Formats: Predictive Power and Costs

  • Dmitry Ryvkin
  • Andreas Ortmann

We analyze tournaments of heterogeneous players from an organizer’s perspective. Using a simple model of a noisy tournament, we demonstrate how the likelihood of selecting the best player, here termed the “predictive power” of a tournament, depends on the tournament format, the distribution of players’ types, and the overall noise level. We formalize the organizer’s decision problem for varying time and measurement costs and compare the predictive power of three widely used tournament formats – contests, binary elimination tournaments, and round-robin tournaments. We show which formats are preferred in the various scenarios and find that for certain parameter constellations, certain formats are not viable.

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Paper provided by The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague in its series CERGE-EI Working Papers with number wp303.

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Date of creation: Sep 2006
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Handle: RePEc:cer:papers:wp303
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  19. Rick Harbaugh & Tilman Klumpp, 2004. "Early Round Upsets and Championship Blowouts," Working Papers 2004-09, Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, Department of Business Economics and Public Policy.
  20. Dmitry Ryvkin & Andreas Ortmann, 2004. "The Predictive Power of Noisy Round-Robin Tournaments," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp236, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economic Institute, Prague.
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