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Lottery versus All-Pay Auction Contests – A Revenue Dominance Theorem

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

Abstract

We allow a contest organizer to bias a contest in a discriminatory way, that is, she can favor specific contestants through the choice of contest success functions in order to maximize total equilibrium effort (resp. revenue). The scope for revenue enhancement through biasing is analyzed and compared for the two predominant contest regimes; i.e. all-pay auctions and lottery contests. Our main result reveals that an appropriately biased all-pay auction revenue dominates the optimally biased lottery contest for all levels of heterogeneity among contestants. Moreover, such a biased all-pay auction will never make use of the celebrated exclusion principle advanced by Baye et al. (1993).

Suggested Citation

  • Franke, Jörg & Kanzow, Christian & Leininger, Wolfgang & Schwartz, Alexandra, 2012. "Lottery versus All-Pay Auction Contests – A Revenue Dominance Theorem," Ruhr Economic Papers 315, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:rwirep:315
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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. Gil S. Epstein & Yosef Mealem & Shmuel Nitzan, 2013. "Lotteries vs. All-Pay Auctions in Fair and Biased Contests," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(1), pages 48-60, March.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    All-pay auction; lottery contest; bias; revenue;
    All these keywords.

    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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