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Optimal use of scarce information: When partisan voters are socially useful

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  • Paolo Balduzzi

    () (Department of Economics, University of Milan-Bicocca)

Abstract

We develop a model of simultaneous and sequential voting in a committee where members do not share their private information and do not have the same preferences. When objective functions differ, an optimal order in the sequential game can be found, leading to a unique socially optimal equilibrium. Our result rationalizes the presence of biased (i.e., partisan) voters in small committees as a way of reaching social optimality.

Suggested Citation

  • Paolo Balduzzi, 2005. "Optimal use of scarce information: When partisan voters are socially useful," Working Papers 87, University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics, revised Mar 2005.
  • Handle: RePEc:mib:wpaper:87
    as

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    File URL: http://dems.unimib.it/repec/pdf/mibwpaper87.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2005
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Lones Smith & Peter Sorensen, 2000. "Pathological Outcomes of Observational Learning," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(2), pages 371-398, March.
    2. Eddie Dekel & Michele Piccione, 2000. "Sequential Voting Procedures in Symmetric Binary Elections," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(1), pages 34-55, February.
    3. Timothy Feddersen & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 1997. "Voting Behavior and Information Aggregation in Elections with Private Information," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(5), pages 1029-1058, September.
    4. Ottaviani, Marco & Sorensen, Peter, 2001. "Information aggregation in debate: who should speak first?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(3), pages 393-421, September.
    5. Feddersen, Timothy J & Pesendorfer, Wolfgang, 1996. "The Swing Voter's Curse," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 408-424, June.
    6. Sushil Bikhchandani & David Hirshleifer & Ivo Welch, 1998. "Learning from the Behavior of Others: Conformity, Fads, and Informational Cascades," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(3), pages 151-170, Summer.
    7. Scharfstein, David S & Stein, Jeremy C, 1990. "Herd Behavior and Investment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(3), pages 465-479, June.
    8. Bikhchandani, Sushil & Hirshleifer, David & Welch, Ivo, 1992. "A Theory of Fads, Fashion, Custom, and Cultural Change in Informational Cascades," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(5), pages 992-1026, October.
    9. Abhijit V. Banerjee, 1992. "A Simple Model of Herd Behavior," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(3), pages 797-817.
    10. Sloth Birgitte, 1993. "The Theory of Voting and Equilibria in Noncooperative Games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 152-169, January.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    voting behaviour; private information; sequential games;

    JEL classification:

    • D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design

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