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All-Pay Auction Equilibria In Contests

  • José Alcalde


    (Universidad de Alicante)

  • Matthias Dahm

    (Universitat Rovira i Virgili)

We analyze (non-deterministic) contests with anonymous contest success functions. There is no restriction on the number of contestants or on their valuations for the prize. We provide intuitive and easily verifiable conditions for the existence of an equilibrium with properties similar to the one of the (deterministic) all-pay auction. Since these conditions are fulfilled for a wide array of situations, the predictions of this equilibrium are very robust to the specific details of the contest. An application of this result contributes to fill a gap in the analysis of the popular Tullock rent- seeking game because it characterizes properties of an equilibrium for increasing returns to scale larger than two, for any number of contestants and in contests with or without a common value.

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Paper provided by Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie) in its series Working Papers. Serie AD with number 2007-27.

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Length: 19 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2007
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published by Ivie
Handle: RePEc:ivi:wpasad:2007-27
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  1. Alesina, Alberto & Spolaore, Enrico, 2006. "Conflict, defense spending, and the number of nations," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 91-120, January.
  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. Skaperdas, Stergios, 1996. "Contest Success Functions," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 7(2), pages 283-90, February.
  4. Nitzan, Shmuel, 1994. "Modelling rent-seeking contests," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 41-60, May.
  5. Konrad, Kai A., 2007. "Strategy in contests: an introduction
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    ," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Market Processes and Governance SP II 2007-01, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  6. Che, Yeon-Koo & Gale, Ian, 2000. "Difference-Form Contests and the Robustness of All-Pay Auctions," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 22-43, January.
  7. Che, Yeon-Koo & Gale, Ian L, 1998. "Caps on Political Lobbying," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 643-51, June.
  8. Baye, Michael R & Kovenock, Dan & de Vries, Casper G, 1993. "Rigging the Lobbying Process: An Application of the All-Pay Auction," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 289-94, March.
  9. Klumpp, Tilman & Polborn, Mattias K., 2006. "Primaries and the New Hampshire Effect," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(6-7), pages 1073-1114, August.
  10. Baye, M.R. & Kovenock, D. & De Varies, C.G., 1990. "The All-Pay Auction With Complete Information," Papers 9051, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
  11. Arye L. Hillman & John G. Riley, 1989. "Politically Contestable Rents And Transfers," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 1(1), pages 17-39, 03.
  12. Szidarovszky, Ferenc & Okuguchi, Koji, 1997. "On the Existence and Uniqueness of Pure Nash Equilibrium in Rent-Seeking Games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 135-140, January.
  13. Perez-Castrillo, J David & Verdier, Thierry, 1992. " A General Analysis of Rent-Seeking Games," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 73(3), pages 335-50, April.
  14. José Alcalde & Matthias Dahm, 2007. "Tullock and Hirshleifer: a meeting of the minds," Review of Economic Design, Springer, vol. 11(2), pages 101-124, September.
  15. Fang, Hanming, 2002. " Lottery versus All-Pay Auction Models of Lobbying," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 112(3-4), pages 351-71, September.
  16. Konrad, Kai A., 2000. "Trade contests," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(2), pages 317-334, August.
  17. Konrad, Kai A., 2000. "Spatial contests," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 965-974, August.
  18. Nti, Kofi O, 1999. " Rent-Seeking with Asymmetric Valuations," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 98(3-4), pages 415-30, March.
  19. David Malueg & Andrew Yates, 2006. "Equilibria in rent-seeking contests with homogeneous success functions," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 27(3), pages 719-727, 04.
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