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Contested Persuasion

Author

Listed:
  • Stergios Skaperdas

    () (Department of Economics, University of California-Irvine)

  • Samarth Vaidya

    () (School of Accounting, Economics and Finance, Deakin University University)

Abstract

We show how contest and rent-seeking functions can be thought of as persuasion functions that can be derived in a Bayesian setting. Two contestants (such as lobbyists or politicians) produce evidence for a decision-maker (such as an agency head or a voter) who has prior beliefs and possibly other biases and engages in Bayesian updating. The probability of each contestant winning depends on the resources and organization of the contestant, on the biases of the decision-maker, on the truth as well as on other factors. We discuss how this approach can be applied to lobbying government at its three branches (legislative, executive, and judicial, the latter in terms of litigation); political campaigning; general policy formulation and advocacy in the wider media; and ideological struggles.

Suggested Citation

  • Stergios Skaperdas & Samarth Vaidya, 2016. "Contested Persuasion," Working Papers 161704, University of California-Irvine, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:irv:wpaper:161704
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    File URL: https://www.economics.uci.edu/research/wp/1617/16-17-04.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Konrad, Kai A., 2009. "Strategy and Dynamics in Contests," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199549603.
    2. Stefano DellaVigna & Matthew Gentzkow, 2010. "Persuasion: Empirical Evidence," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 2(1), pages 643-669, September.
    3. Stergios Skaperdas & Samarth Vaidya, 2012. "Persuasion as a contest," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 51(2), pages 465-486, October.
    4. Jia, Hao & Skaperdas, Stergios & Vaidya, Samarth, 2013. "Contest functions: Theoretical foundations and issues in estimation," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 211-222.
    5. Dan Kovenock & Michael R. Baye & Casper G. de Vries, 1996. "The all-pay auction with complete information (*)," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 8(2), pages 291-305.
    6. Mueller, Dennis C & Stratmann, Thomas, 1994. "Informative and Persuasive Campaigning," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 81(1-2), pages 55-77, October.
    7. Roger Congleton, 1986. "Rent-seeking aspects of political advertising," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 49(3), pages 249-263, January.
    8. Epstein, Gil S. & Nitzan, Shmuel, 2004. "Strategic restraint in contests," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 201-210, February.
    9. Alex Robson & Stergios Skaperdas, 2008. "Costly enforcement of property rights and the Coase theorem," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 36(1), pages 109-128, July.
    10. Arye L. Hillman & John G. Riley, 1989. "Politically Contestable Rents And Transfers," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 1(1), pages 17-39, March.
    11. Alexander V. Hirsch & Kenneth W. Shotts, 2015. "Competitive Policy Development," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(4), pages 1646-1664, April.
    12. repec:cup:apsrev:v:89:y:1995:i:01:p:49-61_09 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Congleton, Roger D., 1991. "Ideological conviction and persuasion in the rent-seeking society," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 65-86, February.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Contests; Lobbying; Rent-seeking;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption
    • D78 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Positive Analysis of Policy Formulation and Implementation
    • H50 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - General

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