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A Model of Expertise

  • Vijay Krishna

    (Penn State University)

  • John Morgan

    (Princeton University)

We study a model in which two perfectly informed experts offer advice to a decision maker whose actions affect the welfare of all. Experts are biased and thus may wish to pull the decision maker in different directions and to different degrees. When the decision maker consults only a single expert, the expert withholds substantial information from the decision maker. We ask whether this situation is improved by having the decision maker consult a cabinet of (two) experts. We first show that there is no perfect Bayesian equilibrium direction, it is never beneficial to consult both. In contrast, when experts are biased in opposite directions, it is always beneficial to consult both. Finally, a cabinet of extremists is of no value.

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Paper provided by Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Discussion Papers in Economics. in its series Working Papers with number 154.

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Date of creation: Jan 1999
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:pri:wwseco:dp206
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  1. Morgan, J. & Stocken, P., 1998. "An Analysis of Stock Recommendations," Papers 204, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Public and International Affairs.
  2. Sobel, Joel, 1985. "A Theory of Credibility," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(4), pages 557-73, October.
  3. Farrell, Joseph, 1986. "Meaning and Credibility in Cheap-Talk Games," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt4968n3fz, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  4. Matthews, Steven A. & Okuno-Fujiwara, Masahiro & Postlewaite, Andrew, 1991. "Refining cheap-talk equilibria," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 247-273, December.
  5. Green, Jerry R. & Stokey, Nancy L., 2007. "A two-person game of information transmission," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 135(1), pages 90-104, July.
  6. Baliga, Sandeep & Corchon, Luis C. & Sjostrom, Tomas, 1997. "The Theory of Implementation When the Planner Is a Player," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 15-33, November.
  7. Joseph Farrell & Matthew Rabin, 1996. "Cheap Talk," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 10(3), pages 103-118, Summer.
  8. Stephen Morris, 1999. "Political Correctness," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1242, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  9. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:116:y:2001:i:1:p:189-227 is not listed on IDEAS
  10. V. Crawford & J. Sobel, 2010. "Strategic Information Transmission," Levine's Working Paper Archive 544, David K. Levine.
  11. Ezra Friedman, 1998. "Public Debate Among Experts," Discussion Papers 1234, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  12. Shin Hyun Song, 1994. "The Burden of Proof in a Game of Persuasion," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 253-264, October.
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