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Effort Maximization in Asymmetric N-person Contest Games

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  • Franke, Jörg
  • Kanzow, Christian
  • Leininger, Wolfgang
  • Väth, Alexandra

Abstract

This paper provides existence and characterization of the optimal contest success function under the condition that the objective of the contest designer is total effort maximization among n heterogeneous players. Heterogeneity of players makes active participation of a player in equilibrium endogenous with respect to the specific contest success function adopted by the contest designer. Hence, the aim of effort maximization implies the identification of those players who should be excluded from making positive efforts.We give a general proof for the existence of an optimal contest success function and provide an algorithm for the determination of the set of actively participating players.This is turn allows to determine optimal efforts in closed form.An important general feature of the solution is that maximization of total effort requires at least three players to be active.

Suggested Citation

  • Franke, Jörg & Kanzow, Christian & Leininger, Wolfgang & Väth, Alexandra, 2009. "Effort Maximization in Asymmetric N-person Contest Games," Ruhr Economic Papers 130, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:rwirep:130
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Konrad, Kai A., 2009. "Strategy and Dynamics in Contests," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199549603.
    2. Gradstein, Mark & Konrad, Kai A, 1999. "Orchestrating Rent Seeking Contests," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(458), pages 536-545, October.
    3. Dasgupta, Ani & Nti, Kofi O., 1998. "Designing an optimal contest," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 14(4), pages 587-603, November.
    4. Richard Cornes & Roger Hartley, 2005. "Asymmetric contests with general technologies," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 26(4), pages 923-946, November.
    5. Alan Gelder & Dan Kovenock & Brian Roberson, 2016. "All-Pay Auctions with Ties," Working Papers 16-31, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
    6. Stein, William E, 2002. "Asymmetric Rent-Seeking with More Than Two Contestants," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 113(3-4), pages 325-336, December.
    7. 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.
    8. Nti, Kofi O., 2004. "Maximum efforts in contests with asymmetric valuations," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 1059-1066, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Beviá, Carmen & Corchón, Luis C., 2013. "Endogenous strength in conflicts," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 297-306.
    2. Todd Kaplan & David Wettstein, 2015. "The optimal design of rewards in contests," Review of Economic Design, Springer;Society for Economic Design, vol. 19(4), pages 327-339, December.
    3. Jia, Hao & Skaperdas, Stergios & Vaidya, Samarth, 2013. "Contest functions: Theoretical foundations and issues in estimation," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 211-222.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Effort maximization; existence of solution; asymmetric contests; participation constraints;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior

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