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Affirmative Action Policy and Effort Levels. Sequential-Move Contest Game Argument

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  • Andrzej Kwiatkowski

Abstract

In this paper we analyse a simple two-person sequential-move contest game with heterogeneous players. Assuming that the heterogeneity could be the consequence of past discrimination, we study the e¤ects of implementation of affirmative action policy, which tackles this heterogeneity by compensating discriminated players, and compare them with the situation in which the heterogeneity is ignored and the contestants are treated equally. In our analysis we consider different orders of moves. We show that the order of moves of contestants is a very important factor in determination of the effects of the implementation of the affirmative action policy. We also prove that in such cases a significant role is played by the level of the heterogeneity of individuals. In particular, in contrast to the present-in-the-literature predictions, we demonstrate that as a consequence of the interplay of these two factors, the response to the implementation of the affirmative action policy option may be the decrease in the total equilibrium effort level of the contestants in comparison to the unbiased contest game.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrzej Kwiatkowski, 2010. "Affirmative Action Policy and Effort Levels. Sequential-Move Contest Game Argument," Dundee Discussion Papers in Economics 242, Economic Studies, University of Dundee.
  • Handle: RePEc:dun:dpaper:242
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Andrew Schotter & Keith Weigelt, 1992. "Asymmetric Tournaments, Equal Opportunity Laws, and Affirmative Action: Some Experimental Results," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(2), pages 511-539.
    2. Baye, M.R. & Kovenock, D. & De Vries, C.G., 1993. "The Solution to the Tullock Rent-Seeking Game when R > 2: Mixed Strategy Equilibria and Mean Dissipation Rates," Papers 10-93-9, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
    3. Qiang Fu, 2006. "A Theory of Affirmative Action in College Admissions," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 44(3), pages 420-428, July.
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    5. Weimann, Joachim & Yang, Chun-Lei & Vogt, Carsten, 2000. "An experiment on sequential rent-seeking," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 41(4), pages 405-426, April.
    6. Baik, Kyung H & Shogren, Jason F, 1992. "Strategic Behavior in Contests: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(1), pages 359-362, March.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Asymmetric contest; sequential-move contest; affirmative action; discrimination;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • J78 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Public Policy (including comparable worth)

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