New Economics Papers
on Collective Decision-Making
Issue of 2014‒06‒28
eleven papers chosen by
Stan C. Weeber, McNeese State University

  1. A fractionally cointegrated VAR analysis of economic voting and political support By Maggie E.C. Jones; Morten Ørregaard Nielsen; Michal Ksawery Popiel
  2. Campaign Spending and Electoral Competition: Towards More Policy Relevant Research By Jeffrey Milyo
  3. Promoting Competition or Helping Less-Endowed? An Experiment on Collective Institutional Choices under Intra-Group Inequality By Kamei, Kenju
  4. Quantifying the Value of a Political Connection: The Case of Presidential Elections in Colombia By Daniel Vaughan
  5. The Public's Right To Know Versus Compelled Speech: What Does Social Science Research Tell Us About The Benefits And Costs Of Campaign Finance Disclosure In Non-Candidate Elections? By Jeffrey Milyo; Dick Carpenter
  6. Essays on India’s Political Economy     By Singh, Nirvikar
  7. Role of Platform Providers in Service Networks: The Case of AppExchange By Sodam Baek; Kibae Kim; Jorn Altmann
  8. Do gender quotas pass the test ? Evidence from academic evaluations in Italy By Manuel Bagues; Mauro Sylos-Labini; Natalia Zinovyeva
  10. A Network Formation Model for Social Object Networks By Somayeh Koohborfardhaghighi; Jorn Altmann
  11. Ode to the sea: Workplace Organizations and Norms of Cooperation By Uri Gneezy; Andreas Leibbrandt; John A. List

  1. By: Maggie E.C. Jones (Queen's University); Morten Ørregaard Nielsen (Queen's University and CREATES); Michal Ksawery Popiel (Queen's University)
    Abstract: We use a fractionally cointegrated vector autoregressive model to examine the relationship between Canadian political support and macroeconomic conditions. This model is well suited for the analysis because it allows multiple fractional time series and admits simple asymptotic inference for the model parameters and tests of the hypotheses of interest. In the long-run equilibrium, we find that support for the Progressive Conservative Party was higher during good economic times, i.e. periods of high interest rates and low unemployment, while support for the Liberal Party was higher during bad economic times, i.e. periods of low interest rates and high unemployment. We also test and reject the notion that party support is driven only by relative (to the United States) economic performance. Indeed, our findings suggest that US macroeconomic variables do not enter the long-run equilibrium of Canadian economic voting (political opinion poll support) at all.
    Keywords: Economic voting, fractional cointegration, political economy, vector autoregressive model
    JEL: C32 D72
    Date: 2014–06
  2. By: Jeffrey Milyo (Department of Economics, University of Missouri-Columbia)
    Abstract: There is a long-standing scholarly literature on the electoral effects of campaign spending; nevertheless, the academic research offers only limited guidance for policy makers interested in campaign finance reform. In part, this is because existing studies have focused narrowly on some vexing statistical issues, while ignoring many others. But it is also because political scientists have not devoted enough effort conducting evaluation studies of how regulatory policies impact the intermediate goal of competition, let alone the ultimate policy goals of reduced corruption, increased citizen participation and improved public policy. Consequently, there is a great need for updated and improved analyses of the treatment effect of campaign spending on political competition in a variety of electoral contexts, but an even greater need for the application of modern evaluation methods to the more basic question of whether campaign finance reforms "work" as advertised.
    Keywords: campaign spending, political competition, campaign finance reform
    JEL: D72 D78
    Date: 2013–09–05
  3. By: Kamei, Kenju
    Abstract: Unequally-distributed resources, whether people’s income or competence, are ubiquitous in our real world. Whether to promote competition or to lead to a more equal environment is often in question in societies or organizations. With heterogeneous endowments, we let subjects collectively choose whether to have a competitive lottery contest - where only one individual in a group wins and receives an award, generating a greater income inequality - or to have a public good that benefits the less-endowed to a greater degree. Our data indicates that highly-endowed individuals contribute little when the public good is selected. The majority of subjects, however, vote in favor of having a public good, contrary to the standard theory predictions. In addition, a belief elicitation task shows that they expect payoffs to be more equally distributed under the public good regime than under the contest regime. Moreover, the subjects’ preferences between the two regimes are little affected by their risk attitudes or the size of awards in competition. These suggest that people’s institutional choices are driven more by their income inequality-averse preferences.
    Keywords: heterogeneity, experiment, cooperation, competition, public goods, inequality
    JEL: C92 D63 D70 D72 H4
    Date: 2014–06–20
  4. By: Daniel Vaughan
    Abstract: Using a novel biographical database including all Presidents and presidential candidates in Colombia for the period 1833-2010 I show that the value of a political connection can be quantified in terms of the votes transferred within a political network. I consider three types of political networks depending on whether links are created by a cabinet or foreign service appointment and a family connection. I find that a one standard deviation increase in votes received by connections generates a maximum gain of three-fourths of a standard deviation. I also reject for the presence of network endogeneity that may bias the estimates.
    Keywords: Political Networks, Political Dynasties, Economic and Political History, Colombia, Elites
    JEL: D85 P16 D72 N46 O54
    Date: 2013–11
  5. By: Jeffrey Milyo (Department of Economics, University of Missouri-Columbia); Dick Carpenter
    Abstract: We review the arguments and evidence for compelled financial disclosure by groups engaged in grassroots issue advocacy or active in ballot measures elections. There is no anti-corruption rationale for disclosure requirements, since these activities do not directly affect candidates for elective office. That leaves only an informational rationale for disclosure in non-candidate contexts. However, there is little evidence that the public utilizes information disclosed by such regulations, or even that disclosure adds to the stock of more readily available and salient information. In contrast, a growing literature documents that there are non-trivial costs of compliance to these regulations, especially for newer or informal citizen coalitions. We conclude with a discussion of the lessons from the social science literature for practical reforms.
    Keywords: public corruption, campaign finance, regulation
    JEL: D72 D78
    Date: 2013–09–05
  6. By: Singh, Nirvikar
    Abstract: This is a collection of essays written for the Financial Express, an Indian financial daily. The common theme of these essays, which cover a period of almost four years, from September 2010 to June 2014, is the issue of governance in India, and how politics combines with societal and institutional structures to shape the quality of governance. The essays discuss corruption, citizenship, effective delivery of public goods and services, taxation and the evolution of democracy at different levels of the Indian polity. The collection begins with the corruption surrounding the Commonwealth Games, and ends with the implications of India’s recent, potentially path-breaking general election. 
    Keywords: Business, Social and Behavioral Sciences, India, governance, corruption, leadership, elections, democracy, politics
    Date: 2014–06–01
  7. By: Sodam Baek (College of Engineering, Seoul National University); Kibae Kim (College of Engineering, Seoul National University); Jorn Altmann (College of Engineering, Seoul National University)
    Abstract: As IT technology advanced, a new style of innovation emerged, in which a leading innovation company invites end-users to its open software service platform. With respect to this type of innovation, a lot of innovation studies were performed to understand the structure of the interaction among users and the platform provider from the perspective of network science. By concentrating only on the internal mechanisms among agents, the previous studies miss to consider innovation through collective intelligence. A platform provider plays an important role in the innovation. In this research, we investigate the structure of a service network with empirical data gathered from AppExchange and discuss the role of a platform provider in innovation through collective intelligence. Our results suggest that the platform provider led the innovation in the initial period and, then, third party developers became gradually innovation leaders. Our findings are expected to re-orient the research focus from internal mechanisms to the role of platform providers.
    Keywords: Software Service Platform, Platform-as-a-Service, Network Analysis,, Open Innovation.
    JEL: D85 L14 L15 L86 O31 O32
    Date: 2014–05
  8. By: Manuel Bagues; Mauro Sylos-Labini; Natalia Zinovyeva
    Abstract: This paper analyzes whether the presence of women in academic committees benefits female candidates. We exploit evidence from Italy, where candidates to Full and Associate Professor positions are required to qualify in a nation-wide evaluation known as Abilitazione Scientifica Nazionale. In 2012, these evaluations involved around 66,000 applications in all academic disciplines and around 900 (randomly chosen) evaluators. We estimate the causal effect of committees' gender composition exploiting the procedure of random assignment of evaluators to committees. Each additional female evaluator decreases by 2 percentage points the success rate of female candidates. The effect is similar in magnitude in evaluations for Full and Associate Professor positions, but it is only statistically significant in the later case. Information from 260,000 individual evaluations suggests that the presence of women in the committee affects the voting behavior of men. Overall, our results cast doubts on the convenience of introducing gender quotas in academia.
    Keywords: gender quotas, discrimination, academic promotions
    Date: 2014–06–21
  9. By: CEMBALO, Luigi; PASCUCCI, Stefano; TAGLIAFIERRO, Carolina; CARACCIOLO, Francesco
    Abstract: The topic of integration and development of sustainable chains has lately gained much attention in the academia debates. In particular, how to manage integration in the bio-energy chains is discussed. Integration is a process of progressive dependence among different actors willing to coordinate processes of innovation. This dynamic is generated by the interaction of individuals willing to start up collective action. The effectiveness of a collective action depends on the number of formal norms developed by collective contracts. This paper tackles these issues considering the specific case study of a collective action in a bio-energy chain. It focuses on the decision-making process of farmers on whether to join or not a collective action, analysing their trade-offs over the attributes of collective contracts. The empirical study was conducted in an area in Southern Italy, most affected by soil erosion problems. A stated preference model was implemented where respondents were asked to choose between alternative collective contracts with varying attribute levels to start biomass cultivation. Two hundreds face-to-face questionnaires were administered to farmers in September-October 2013. First results show that participation is mainly influenced by minimum price guaranteed, contract length, and re-negotiation before the end of a contract.
    Keywords: Agro-biomass, Choice Modelling, Contract farming, Soil erosion mitigation, Valuing contract attributes, Agribusiness, Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies, Resource /Energy Economics and Policy, D71, D86, O13,
    Date: 2014–04
  10. By: Somayeh Koohborfardhaghighi (Technology Management, Economics, and Policy, College of Engineering, Seoul National University); Jorn Altmann (College of Engineering, Seoul National University)
    Abstract: Social networks can be differentiated according to the type of entities (i.e., humans or objects) that are represented within them. These networks can be called human networks and social object networks, respectively. Actors in human networks can act strategically to maximize their own payoffs during interactions with other humans. However, actors in social object network (e.g., SaaS service network) are not able to perceive the environment and act strategically upon that at any time. Only when they join the network, humans position them such that it maximizes their payoff. This paper contends that existing network formation models lack sufficient attention to social object networks (e.g., SaaS service networks). Therefore, we propose a new network formation model, through which we are able to explain how a SaaS service network emerges during the service composition procedure by service developers. The new network formulation model not only considers the usage frequency and reputation but also the similarity of the functionalities of the main SaaS services. It also explains how social objects (e.g., SaaS services) can benefit from establishment of links among each other in the network.
    Keywords: Software-as-a-Service Network, Network Formation Model, Social Object Networks.
    JEL: C02 C6 C15 D85 L86 O33
    Date: 2014–06
  11. By: Uri Gneezy; Andreas Leibbrandt; John A. List
    Abstract: The functioning and well-being of any society and organization critically hinges on norms of cooperation that regulate social activities. Empirical evidence on how such norms emerge and in which environments they thrive remains a clear void in the literature. To provide an initial set of insights, we overlay a set of field experiments in a natural setting. Our approach is to compare behavior in Brazilian fishermen societies that differ along one major dimension: the workplace organization. In one society (located by the sea) fishermen are forced to work in groups whereas in the adjacent society (located on a lake) fishing is inherently an individual activity. We report sharp evidence that the sea fishermen trust and cooperate more and have greater ability to coordinate group actions than their lake fishermen counterparts. These findings are consistent with the argument that people internalize social norms that emerge from specific needs and support the idea that socio-ecological factors play a decisive role in the proliferation of pro-social behaviors.
    JEL: C93 J0
    Date: 2014–06

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