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Kingmakers and leaders in coalition formation

Author

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  • Brams, Steven J.
  • Kilgour, D. Marc

Abstract

Assume that players strictly rank each other as coalition partners. We propose a procedure whereby they “fall back” on their preferences, yielding internally compatible, or coherent, majority coalition(s), which we call fallback coalitions. If there is more than one fallback coalition, the players common to them, or kingmakers, determine which fallback coalition will form. The first player(s) acceptable to all other members of a fallback coalition are the leader(s) of that coalition. The effects of different preference assumption--particularly, different kinds of single-peakedness--and of player weights on the number of coherent coalitions, their connectedness, and which players become kingmakers and leaders are investigated. The fallback procedure may be used (i) empirically to identify kingmakers and leaders or (ii) normatively to select them. We illustrate and test the model by applying it to coalition formation on the U.S. Supreme Court, 2005-2009, which shows the build-up over stages of a conservative coalition that prevailed in nearly half of the 5-4 decisions.

Suggested Citation

  • Brams, Steven J. & Kilgour, D. Marc, 2010. "Kingmakers and leaders in coalition formation," MPRA Paper 22710, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:22710
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    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/22710/1/MPRA_paper_22710.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Steven Brams & Michael Jones & D. Kilgour, 2005. "Forming stable coalitions: The process matters," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 125(1), pages 67-94, July.
    2. Serguei Kaniovski & Dennis Leech, 2009. "A behavioral power index," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 141(1), pages 17-29, October.
    3. I. D. Hill, 2008. "Mathematics and Democracy: Designing Better Voting and Fair-division Procedures," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 171(4), pages 1032-1033.
    4. Steven J. Brams & Michael A. Jones & D. Marc Kilgour, 2002. "Single-Peakedness and Disconnected Coalitions," Journal of Theoretical Politics, , vol. 14(3), pages 359-383, July.
    5. Martin, Andrew D. & Quinn, Kevin M., 2002. "Dynamic Ideal Point Estimation via Markov Chain Monte Carlo for the U.S. Supreme Court, 1953–1999," Political Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 10(02), pages 134-153, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Steven Brams & Gustavo Camilo & Alexandra Franz, 2014. "Coalition formation on the U.S. Supreme Court: 1969–2009," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 158(3), pages 525-539, March.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    coalition formation; fallback procedure; kingmakers; leaders; US Supreme Court;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • C7 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory
    • D85 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Network Formation

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