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Strategy in contests: an introduction
[Strategie in Turnieren – eine Einführung]

  • Konrad, Kai A.

Competition in which goods or rents are allocated as a function of the various efforts expended by players in trying to win these goods or rents is a very common phenomenon. A subset of examples comes from marketing, litigation, relative reward schemes or promotion tournaments in internal labor markets, beauty contests, influence activities, education filters, R&D contests, electoral competition in political markets, military conflict and sports. I survey here this type of competition which is sometimes called contest or tournament. I focus on the role of its various design aspects, such as prize structure, sequencing, nesting, repetition, elimination contests and many others. Some key insights about the nature and properties of this type of competition emerge from this analysis.

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Paper provided by Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB) in its series Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Market Processes and Governance with number SP II 2007-01.

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