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Delegation, worker compensation, and strategic competition

Author

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  • Güth, Werner
  • Pull, Kerstin
  • Stadler, Manfred

Abstract

We study interfirm competition on a product market where effort decisions are delegated to the firms' workers. Intrafirm organization is captured by a principal-multiagent framework where firm owners implement alternative compensation schemes for the workers. We show that the value of delegation as well as the optimal design of the compensation scheme crucially depend on the intensity of competition. In particular, our model explains why piece rates and performance-based revenue sharing may be observed in different markets at the same time.

Suggested Citation

  • Güth, Werner & Pull, Kerstin & Stadler, Manfred, 2014. "Delegation, worker compensation, and strategic competition," University of Tuebingen Working Papers in Economics and Finance 67, University of Tuebingen, Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:tuewef:67
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Cuñat, Vicente & Guadalupe, Maria, 2009. "Executive compensation and competition in the banking and financial sectors," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 495-504, March.
    2. Werner Güth & Kerstin Pull & Manfred Stadler, 2009. "Intra-firm Conflicts and Interfirm Competition," Jena Economic Research Papers 2009-007, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
    3. Graziano, Clara & Parigi, Bruno M., 1998. "Do managers work harder in competitive industries?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 489-498, March.
    4. Jansen, Thijs & van Lier, Arie & van Witteloostuijn, Arjen, 2007. "A note on strategic delegation: The market share case," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, pages 531-539.
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    7. Berger, Johannes & Herbertz, Claus & Sliwka, Dirk, 2011. "Incentives and Cooperation in Firms: Field Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 5618, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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    9. Macho-Stadler, Ines & Perez-Castrillo, J. David, 2001. "An Introduction to the Economics of Information: Incentives and Contracts," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, edition 2, number 9780199243273.
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    14. Krakel, Matthias, 2003. "U-type versus J-type tournaments as alternative solutions to the unverifiability problem," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(3), pages 359-380, June.
    15. Judd, Kenneth L, 1987. "The Welfare Cost of Factor Taxation in a Perfect-Foresight Model," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(4), pages 675-709, August.
    16. Steven D. Sklivas, 1987. "The Strategic Choice of Managerial Incentives," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, pages 452-458.
    17. Lin, Ming-Jen, 2008. "External market condition and tournaments: Theory and evidence," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 99(1), pages 75-78, April.
    18. Maggi, Giovanni, 1996. "Strategic Trade Policies with Endogenous Mode of Competition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 237-258.
    19. Susan Helper & Morris M. Kleiner & Yingchun Wang, 2010. "Analyzing Compensation Methods in Manufacturing: Piece Rates, Time Rates, or Gain-Sharing?," NBER Working Papers 16540, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    20. Fershtman, Chaim, 1985. "Managerial incentives as a strategic variable in duopolistic environment," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, pages 245-253.
    21. Güth, Werner & Pull, Kerstin & Stadler, Manfred, 2012. "Strategic delegation in price competition," University of Tuebingen Working Papers in Economics and Finance 43, University of Tuebingen, Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences.
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    Cited by:

    1. Werner Güth & René Levínský & Kerstin Pull & Ori Weisel, 2016. "Tournaments and piece rates revisited: a theoretical and experimental study of output-dependent prize tournaments," Review of Economic Design, Springer;Society for Economic Design, pages 69-88.
    2. Pull, Kerstin & Stadler, Manfred, 2015. "Contests vs. piece rates in product market competition," University of Tuebingen Working Papers in Economics and Finance 85, University of Tuebingen, Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences.
    3. Werner Güth & René Levínský & Kerstin Pull & Ori Weisel, 2016. "Tournaments and piece rates revisited: a theoretical and experimental study of output-dependent prize tournaments," Review of Economic Design, Springer;Society for Economic Design, pages 69-88.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    delegation; agency theory; compensation schemes;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • L22 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Organization and Market Structure
    • M52 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Compensation and Compensation Methods and Their Effects

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