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Leading the Party: Coordination, Direction, and Communication

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Listed:
  • David P. Myatt
  • Torun Dewan

Abstract

Party activists face a coordination problem: a critical mass (a barrier to coordination) must advocate a single policy alternative if the party is to succeed. The need for direction is the degree to which the merits of the alternatives respond to the underlying mood of the party. An individual`s ability to assess the mood is his sense of direction. These factors combine to form an index of both the desirability and the feasibility of leadership: we call this index Michels` Ratio. A sovereign party conference gives way to leadership by an individual or oligarchy if and only if Michels` Ratio is sufficiently high. Leadership enhances the clarity of intra-party communication, but weakens the response of policy choices to the party`s mood.

Suggested Citation

  • David P. Myatt & Torun Dewan, 2006. "Leading the Party: Coordination, Direction, and Communication," Economics Series Working Papers 280, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:oxf:wpaper:280
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    File URL: http://www.economics.ox.ac.uk/materials/working_papers/paper280.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. 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.
    2. Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin, 2002. "Social Value of Public Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1521-1534, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Bouton, Laurent & Castanheira, Micael & Llorente-Saguer, Aniol, 2016. "Divided majority and information aggregation: Theory and experiment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 134(C), pages 114-128.
    2. Junichiro Ishida & Takashi Shimizu, 2012. "Asking One Too Many? Why Leaders Need to Be Decisive," ISER Discussion Paper 0857, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
    3. Dewan, Torun & Myatt, David P., 2008. "The Qualities of Leadership: Direction, Communication, and Obfuscation," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 102(03), pages 351-368, August.
    4. repec:bla:manchs:v:85:y:2017:i:4:p:395-429 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Mukand, Sharun; Majumdar, Sumon, 2010. "The Leader as Catalyst: On Mass Movements and the Mechanics of Institutional Change," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 08, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
    6. Bouton, Laurent & Castanheira, Micael & Llorente-Saguer, Aniol, 2017. "Multicandidate elections: Aggregate uncertainty in the laboratory," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 101(C), pages 132-150.
    7. Laurent Bouton & Micael Castanheira, 2012. "One Person, Many Votes: Divided Majority and Information Aggregation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 80(1), pages 43-87, January.
    8. Laurent Bouton & Benjamin G. Ogden, 2017. "Ethical Voting in Multicandidate Elections," NBER Working Papers 23898, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Javier Rivas & Carmelo Rodríguez-Álvarez, 2017. "Deliberation, Leadership and Information Aggregation," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 85(4), pages 395-429, July.
    10. Laurent Bouton, 2013. "A Theory of Strategic Voting in Runoff Elections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(4), pages 1248-1288, June.
    11. Shapiro, Dmitry & Shi, Xianwen & Zillante, Artie, 2014. "Level-k reasoning in a generalized beauty contest," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 86(C), pages 308-329.
    12. Dmitry Shapiro & Xianwen Shi & Artie Zillante, 2009. "Robustness of Level-k Reasoning in Generalized Beauty Contest Games," Working Papers tecipa-380, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Leadership; Direction; Coordination; Communication; Oligarchy;

    JEL classification:

    • D7 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making
    • D8 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty
    • H1 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government

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