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Multilayered Tournaments


  • Junichiro Ishida


In many facets of life, we often face competition with a multilayered structure in which different levels of competition take place simultaneously. In this paper, we propose a new class of tournament models, called multilayered tournaments, to capture this type of competitive environment. Among other things, we find that: (i) an increase in individual incentives, holding the level of team incentives fixed, can lower total effort as it induces inefficient allocation of effort; (ii) the optimal level of individual incentives depends on and is complementary to the level of team incentives. The analysis illuminates the essential role of economic subgroups, such as firms, in achieving some degree of cooperation in an inherently competitive environment, and provides an explanation for why high-powered incentives are more common in market arrangements than within firms.

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  • Junichiro Ishida, 2013. "Multilayered Tournaments," ISER Discussion Paper 0879, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
  • Handle: RePEc:dpr:wpaper:0879

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    1. Lazear, Edward P & Rosen, Sherwin, 1981. "Rank-Order Tournaments as Optimum Labor Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(5), pages 841-864, October.
    2. Sutter, Matthias & Strassmair, Christina, 2009. "Communication, cooperation and collusion in team tournaments--An experimental study," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 506-525, May.
    3. Junichiro Ishida, 2006. "Team Incentives under Relative Performance Evaluation," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(1), pages 187-206, March.
    4. Itoh, Hideshi, 1991. "Incentives to Help in Multi-agent Situations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(3), pages 611-636, May.
    5. Warneryd, Karl, 1998. "Distributional conflict and jurisdictional organization," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(3), pages 435-450, September.
    6. Gurtler, Oliver, 2008. "On sabotage in collective tournaments," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(3-4), pages 383-393, February.
    7. Holmstrom, Bengt & Milgrom, Paul, 1991. "Multitask Principal-Agent Analyses: Incentive Contracts, Asset Ownership, and Job Design," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(0), pages 24-52, Special I.
    8. Hodaka Morita, 2012. "Firm Dynamics and Labor Market Consequences," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 28(2), pages 235-264.
    9. Rosen, Sherwin, 1986. "Prizes and Incentives in Elimination Tournaments," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 701-715, September.
    10. Nalbantian, Haig R & Schotter, Andrew, 1997. "Productivity under Group Incentives: An Experimental Study," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(3), pages 314-341, June.
    11. Nitzan, Shmuel, 1991. "Collective Rent Dissipation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(409), pages 1522-1534, November.
    12. Richard L. Fullerton & R. Preston McAfee, 1999. "Auctioning Entry into Tournaments," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(3), pages 573-605, June.
    13. Anthony M. Marino & Ján Zábojník, 2004. "Internal Competition for Corporate Resources and Incentives in Teams," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 35(4), pages 710-727, Winter.
    14. Nitzan, Shmuel & Ueda, Kaoru, 2011. "Prize sharing in collective contests," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 55(5), pages 678-687, June.
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