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All-pay auction equilibria in contests

  • Alcalde, José
  • Dahm, Matthias

We analyze (non-deterministic) contests with anonymous contest success functions. There is no restriction on the number of contestants or on their valuations for the prize. We provide intuitive and easily verifiable conditions for the existence of an equilibrium with properties similar to the one of the (deterministic) all-pay auction. Since these conditions are fulfilled for a wide array of situations, the predictions of this equilibrium are very robust to the specific details of the contest. An application of this result contributes to fill a gap in the analysis of the popular Tullock rent- seeking game because it characterizes properties of an equilibrium for increasing returns to scale larger than two, for any number of contestants and in contests with or without a common value. Keywords: (non-) deterministic contest, all-pay auction, contest success functions. JEL Classification Numbers: C72 (Noncooperative Games), D72 (Economic Models of Political Processes: Rent-Seeking, Elections), D44 (Auctions).

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2072/5368
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Paper provided by Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2072/5368.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:urv:wpaper:2072/5368
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  1. Baye, M.R. & Kovenock, D. & De Vries, C.G., 1993. "The Solution to the Tullock Rent-Seeking Game when r>2: Mixed-Strategy Equilibria and Mean Dissipation Rates," Purdue University Economics Working Papers 1039, Purdue University, Department of Economics.
  2. Baye, M.R. & Kovenock, D., 1993. "The Solution of the Tullock Rent-Seeking Game when R > 2 : Mixed-Strategy Equilibria and Mean Dissipation Rates," Discussion Paper 1993-68, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  3. Yeon-Koo Che & Ian Gale, 1998. "Caps on Political Lobbying," Microeconomics 9809003, EconWPA.
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  5. Che,Y.K. & Gale,I., 1998. "Difference-form contests and the robustness of all-pay auctions," Working papers 6, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  6. David Malueg & Andrew Yates, 2006. "Equilibria in rent-seeking contests with homogeneous success functions," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 27(3), pages 719-727, 04.
  7. Spolaore, Enrico & Alesina, Alberto, 2006. "Conflict, Defense Spending, and the Number of Nations," Scholarly Articles 4553016, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  8. Skaperdas, Stergios, 1996. "Contest Success Functions," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 7(2), pages 283-90, February.
  9. Arye L. Hillman & John G. Riley, 1989. "Politically Contestable Rents And Transfers," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 1(1), pages 17-39, 03.
  10. Baye, M. & Kovenock, D. & de Vries, C., 1990. "The All-Pay Auction with Complete Information," Discussion Paper 1990-51, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  11. Nti, Kofi O, 1999. "Rent-Seeking with Asymmetric Valuations," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 98(3-4), pages 415-30, March.
  12. José Alcalde & Matthias Dahm, 2007. "Tullock And Hirshleifer: A Meeting Of The Minds," Working Papers. Serie AD 2007-13, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
  13. Baye, Michael R & Kovenock, Dan & de Vries, Casper G, 1993. "Rigging the Lobbying Process: An Application of the All-Pay Auction," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 289-94, March.
  14. Szidarovszky, Ferenc & Okuguchi, Koji, 1997. "On the Existence and Uniqueness of Pure Nash Equilibrium in Rent-Seeking Games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 135-140, January.
  15. Baye, Michael R & Kovenock, Dan & de Vries, Casper G, 1994. "The Solution to the Tullock Rent-Seeking Game When R Is Greater Than 2: Mixed-Strategy Equilibria and Mean Dissipation Rates," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 81(3-4), pages 363-80, December.
  16. Partha Dasgupta & Eric Maskin, 1986. "The Existence of Equilibrium in Discontinuous Economic Games, I: Theory," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 53(1), pages 1-26.
  17. Fang, Hanming, 2002. "Lottery versus All-Pay Auction Models of Lobbying," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 112(3-4), pages 351-71, September.
  18. Nitzan, Shmuel, 1994. "Modelling rent-seeking contests," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 41-60, May.
  19. David P. Baron & Daniel Diermeier, 2007. "Strategic Activism and Nonmarket Strategy," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 16(3), pages 599-634, 09.
  20. Konrad, Kai A., 2000. "Spatial contests," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 965-974, August.
  21. Perez-Castrillo, J David & Verdier, Thierry, 1992. "A General Analysis of Rent-Seeking Games," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 73(3), pages 335-50, April.
  22. Partha Dasgupta & Eric Maskin, 1986. "The Existence of Equilibrium in Discontinuous Economic Games, II: Applications," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 53(1), pages 27-41.
  23. Konrad, Kai A., 2007. "Strategy in contests: an introduction
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  24. Klumpp, Tilman & Polborn, Mattias K., 2006. "Primaries and the New Hampshire Effect," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(6-7), pages 1073-1114, August.
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