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On Robust Constitution Design

  • Auriol, Emmanuelle
  • Gary-Bobo, Robert

We study a class of representation mechanisms, based on reports made by a random subset of agents, called representatives, in a collective choice problem with quasi-linear utilities. We do not assume the existence of a common prior probability describing the distribution of preference types. In addition, there is no benevolent planner. An individual who cannot be assumed impartial, a self-interested executive, will carry out decisions. These assumptions impose new constraints on Mechanism Design. A robust mechanism is defined as maximizing expected welfare under a vague prior probability distribution, and over a set of mechanisms which is at the same time immune from opportunistic manipulations by the executive, and compatible with truthful revelation of preferences by representatives. Robust mechanisms are characterized and their existence is shown. Sampling Groves mechanisms are shown to be robust.

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Paper provided by Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse in its series IDEI Working Papers with number 136.

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Date of creation: Dec 2001
Date of revision: Aug 2006
Publication status: Published in Theory and Decision, vol.�62, n°3, mai 2007, p.�241-279.
Handle: RePEc:ide:wpaper:657
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  1. Ledyard, John O., 1978. "Incentive compatibility and incomplete information," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 171-189, June.
  2. Hagerty, Kathleen M. & Rogerson, William P., 1987. "Robust trading mechanisms," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 94-107, June.
  3. Emmanuelle Auriol & Robert Gary-Bobo, 2007. "On Robust Constitution Design," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 62(3), pages 241-279, May.
  4. Jeff Ely, 2003. "Foundations of Dominant Strategy Mechanisms," Theory workshop papers 658612000000000064, UCLA Department of Economics.
  5. Dirk Bergemann & Stephen Morris, 2003. "Robust Mechanism Design," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1421R, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University, revised Apr 2004.
  6. Eric Maskin & John Moore, 1999. "Implementation and Renegotiation," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1863, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  7. Dennis Mueller & Robert Tollison & Thomas Willett, 1972. "Representative democracy via random selection," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 57-68, March.
  8. Bengt Holmstrom & Roger B. Myerson, 1981. "Efficient and Durable Decision Rules with Incomplete Information," Discussion Papers 495, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  9. Green, Jerry & Laffont, Jean-Jacques, 1977. "Characterization of Satisfactory Mechanisms for the Revelation of Preferences for Public Goods," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(2), pages 427-38, March.
  10. E. Auriol & R. Gary-Bobo, 2000. "On the Optimal Number of Representatives," THEMA Working Papers 2000-01, THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise.
  11. Gordon Tullock, 1977. "Practical problems and practical solutions," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 29(2), pages 27-35, March.
  12. Makowski, Louis & Ostroy, Joseph M., 1987. "Vickrey-Clarke-Groves mechanisms and perfect competition," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 244-261, August.
  13. Gary-Bobo, Robert J. & Jaaidane, Touria, 2000. "Polling mechanisms and the demand revelation problem," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 203-238, May.
  14. Groves, Theodore, 1973. "Incentives in Teams," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(4), pages 617-31, July.
  15. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & Martimort, David, 1998. "Mechanism Design with Collusion and Correlation," IDEI Working Papers 81, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  16. Holmstrom, Bengt, 1979. "Groves' Scheme on Restricted Domains," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(5), pages 1137-44, September.
  17. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521424585 is not listed on IDEAS
  18. Moulin, H., 1986. "Characterizations of the pivotal mechanism," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 53-78, October.
  19. Palfrey, Thomas R. & Srivastava, Sanjay, 1991. "Efficient trading mechanisms with pre-play communication," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 17-40, October.
  20. Ilya Segal, 2003. "Optimal Pricing Mechanisms with Unknown Demand," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(3), pages 509-529, June.
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