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Optimal deadlines for agreements


  • Wing Suen

    (The University of Hong Kong)

  • Hao Li

    (University of Toronto)

  • Ettore Damiano

    (University of Toronto)


We provide a welfare analysis of the deadline effect in a repeated negotiation game in which costly delay can produce information that improves the quality of the decision. We characterize equilibrium strategies and the evolution of beliefs in continuous time, and study how the length of the negotiation horizon affects players’ behavior and welfare. The optimal deadline is positive if and only if the ex ante probability that the players disagree on the preferred decision is neither too high nor too low. When it is positive, the optimal deadline is given by the shortest time that would allow efficient information aggregation in equilibrium, which is increasing in the ex ante probability of disagreement and is finitely long.

Suggested Citation

  • Wing Suen & Hao Li & Ettore Damiano, 2010. "Optimal deadlines for agreements," 2010 Meeting Papers 855, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:sed010:855

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Heckman, James & Singer, Burton, 1984. "A Method for Minimizing the Impact of Distributional Assumptions in Econometric Models for Duration Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(2), pages 271-320, March.
    2. Ettore Damiano & Hao Li & Wing Suen, 2008. "Delay in Strategic Information Aggregation," Working Papers tecipa-311, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
    3. Alvin E. Roth & Axel Ockenfels, 2002. "Last-Minute Bidding and the Rules for Ending Second-Price Auctions: Evidence from eBay and Amazon Auctions on the Internet," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(4), pages 1093-1103, September.
    4. Ponsati, Clara, 1995. "The deadline effect: A theoretical note," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 48(3-4), pages 281-285, June.
    5. Jarque, Xavier & Ponsati, Clara & Sakovics, Jozsef, 2003. "Mediation: incomplete information bargaining with filtered communication," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(7), pages 803-830, September.
    6. Fershtman Chaim & Seidmann Daniel J., 1993. "Deadline Effects and Inefficient Delay in Bargaining with Endogenous Commitment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 306-321, August.
    7. Hao Li & Sherwin Rosen & Wing Suen, 2001. "Conflicts and Common Interests in Committees," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1478-1497, December.
    8. Ma, Ching-To Albert & Manove, Michael, 1993. "Bargaining with Deadlines and Imperfect Player Control," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(6), pages 1313-1339, November.
    9. Anat R. Admati & Motty Perry, 1987. "Strategic Delay in Bargaining," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 54(3), pages 345-364.
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    Cited by:

    1. Han Feng & David Hobson, 2015. "Gambling in contests modelled with diffusions," Decisions in Economics and Finance, Springer;Associazione per la Matematica, vol. 38(1), pages 21-37, April.
    2. Weng, Xi, 2015. "Can learning cause shorter delays in reaching agreements?," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 49-62.
    3. repec:eee:indorg:v:53:y:2017:i:c:p:326-352 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Campbell, Arthur & Ederer, Florian & Spinnewijn, Johannes, 2011. "Time to Decide: Information Search and Revelation in Groups," CEPR Discussion Papers 8531, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Avni, Shlomit & Filc, Dani & Davidovitch, Nadav, 2015. "The Israeli Medical Association's discourse on health inequity," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 144(C), pages 119-126.
    6. Frommeyer, Tim, 2015. "On Two-Period Committee Voting: Why Straw Polls Should Have Consequences," Annual Conference 2015 (Muenster): Economic Development - Theory and Policy 112806, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • C78 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Bargaining Theory; Matching Theory
    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness


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