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Opinion Pooling under Asymmetric Information


  • Franz Dietrich

    (University of Konstanz, Center for Junior Research Fellows)


If each member of a group assigns a certain probability to a hypothesis, what probability should the collective as a whole assign? More generally, how should individual probability functions be merged into a single collective one? I investigate this question in case that the individual probability functions are based on different information sets. Under suitable assumptions, I present a simple solution to this aggregation problem, and a more complex solution that can cope with any overlaps between different persons' information sets. The solutions are derived from an axiomatic system that models the individuals as well as the collective as Bayesian rational agents. Two notable features are that the solutions may be parameter-free, and that they incorporate each individual's information although the individuals need not communicate their (perhaps very complex) information, but rather reveal only the resulting probabilities.

Suggested Citation

  • Franz Dietrich, 2004. "Opinion Pooling under Asymmetric Information," Public Economics 0407002, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwppe:0407002
    Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 20. prepared from latex-dvi

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    Cited by:

    1. Franz Dietrich, 2010. "Bayesian group belief," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 35(4), pages 595-626, October.

    More about this item


    opinion pooling; probability aggregation; decision theory; social choice theory; Bayesian rationality; Bayesian aggregation; information;

    JEL classification:

    • D70 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - General
    • D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
    • D80 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - General
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • C11 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Bayesian Analysis: General

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