Meetings with costly participation: An empirical
Using data from the Mid-Atlantic surf clam and ocean quahog fishery, we find that firms with a preference for extreme, rather than moderate, policies are much more likely to participate in public meetings where regulation is determined. We also find that participation rates are higher for larger, closer, and more influential firms. These results; (1) improve our understanding of a very common institution for resource allocation, 'meetings with costly participation', (2) they refine our intuition about regulatory capture, (3) they provide broad confirmation of the recent theoretical literature predicting that polarization and bipartisanship should emerge under a variety of democratic institutions, and finally, (4) they may help to explain management problems in US fisheries
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