Essay on contests and voting

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dc.contributor.advisor Corchón, Luis Serena, Marco 2017-03-01T19:30:50Z 2017-03-01T19:30:50Z 2016-06 2017-01-10
dc.description.abstract This thesis has three chapters. In the first chapter I study the role of information in contests. A contestant’s effort depends on her knowledge of her rival’s type. This knowledge is often limited in real-life contests. I propose a model where the principal of a contest has commitment power to verifiably disclose contestants’ types. I investigate the optimal disclosure policy to stimulate contestants’ efforts. I find that full disclosure spurs more (less) efforts than full concealment if the distribution of types is skewed toward high- (low-) types. However, the optimal disclosure policy is a particular partial disclosure, regardless of the skewness of the distribution of types; it consists of disclosing the signal which is best for the principal (i.e., all contestants are high-types) and concealing the rest. In the second chapter I propose a novel objective function of a contest designer. When the winner selection process in a contest is noisy, the designer should take this noise into consideration when designing the contest if her goal is to maximize the quality of the winning entry. I propose an objective function that accommodates this idea, and I compare the optimal contest design under this objective function to the one under the commonly assumed maximization of sum of contestants’ efforts. I find that, contrarily to what happened when the designer maximized the sum of efforts, the optimal contest design changes in that a designer may now benefit from: unlevelled playing field, exclusion of weak contestants, and weakening of the underdog. In the third chapter, which is a joint work with Christos Mavridis, we contribute to the literature on pivotal voter models. For small electorates, the probability of casting the pivotal vote drives one’s willingness to vote, however the existence of costs of voting incentivizes one’s abstention. In two-alternative pivotal-voter models, this trade-off has been extensively studied under private information on the cost of voting. We complement the literature by providing an analysis under complete information, extending the analysis of Palfrey and Rosenthal [1983. A strategic calculus of voting. Public Choice. 41, 7-53]. If the cost of voting is sufficiently high at least for supporters of one of the two alternatives, the equilibrium is unique, and fully characterized. If instead the cost of voting is sufficiently low for everyone, we characterize three classes of equilibria and we find that all equilibria must belong to one of these three classes, regardless of the number of individuals. Furthermore we focus on equilibria which are continuous in the cost of voting. We show that this equilibrium refinement pins down a unique equilibrium. We conclude by discussing an application of our findings to redistribution of wealth.
dc.description.tableofcontents Harnessing beliefs to stimulate efforts / Marco Serena. -- Quality contests / Marco Serena. -- Costly voting under complete information / Marco Serena and Christos Mavridis
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language.iso eng
dc.rights Atribución-NoComercial-SinDerivadas 3.0 España
dc.subject.other Economía matemática
dc.subject.other Modelo matemático
dc.subject.other Teoría de juegos
dc.title Essay on contests and voting
dc.type doctoralThesis
dc.subject.eciencia Economía
dc.rights.accessRights openAccess Programa Oficial de Doctorado en Economía
dc.description.responsability Presidente: Santiago Sánchez Pages; Secretario: Jan Zapal; Vocal: Ángel Hernando Veciana
dc.contributor.departamento Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía
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