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Dynamic Regulation of Quality


  • Stéphane Auray

    () (Université Lille 3 (GREMARS), Université de Sherbrooke (GREDI) and CIRPÉE)

  • Thomas Mariotti

    (Toulouse School of Economics (GREMAQ/CNRS and IDEI))

  • Fabien Moizeau

    (Toulouse School of Economics (GREMAQ))


We investigate the design of incentives for quality provision in a dynamic regulation setting in which maintenance efforts and quality shocks have durable effects. When the regulator contracts with a sequence of agents, asymmetries of information can lead to overprovision of quality, reflecting a dynamic rent extraction motive. When the regulator hires a single agent to manage quality, over-provision of quality can also be used by the regulator to strengthen dynamic incentives. We further show that for small levels of asymmetric information, the regulator may prefer contracting with a sequence of agents rather than hiring a single agent if high quality shocks are relatively unfrequent, provided all parties can commit to a long-term contract. When no such commitment is feasible, the fact that quality physically links periods together leads to a ratchet effect even under recurring private information, and shorter franchises are beneficial from a social viewpoint.

Suggested Citation

  • Stéphane Auray & Thomas Mariotti & Fabien Moizeau, 2008. "Dynamic Regulation of Quality," Cahiers de recherche 08-11, Departement d'Economique de l'École de gestion à l'Université de Sherbrooke.
  • Handle: RePEc:shr:wpaper:08-11

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Malin Arve & David Martimort, 2016. "Dynamic Procurement under Uncertainty: Optimal Design and Implications for Incomplete Contracts," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(11), pages 3238-3274, November.
    2. Cesi Berardino & Iozzi Alberto & Valentini Edilio, 2012. "Regulating Unverifiable Quality by Fixed-Price Contracts," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 12(1), pages 1-39, September.
    3. Changying Li & Jianhu Zhang, 2013. "Dynamic Games of R&D Competition in a Differentiated Duopoly," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 169(4), pages 660-679, December.
    4. Saha, Souresh, 2014. "Firm's objective function and product and process R&D," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 484-494.

    More about this item


    Quality; Regulation; Asymmetric Information;

    JEL classification:

    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
    • L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation

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