nep-cdm New Economics Papers
on Collective Decision-Making
Issue of 2016‒04‒04
eleven papers chosen by
Stan C. Weeber
McNeese State University

  1. Biases in Voting - The Case of the FIFA Best Player Award By Tom Coupe; Olivier Gergaud; Abdul Noury
  2. Religious Riots and Electoral Politics in India By Sriya Iyer; Anand Shrivastava; ;
  3. Effects of Welfare Reform on Women's Voting Participation By Dhaval M. Dave; Hope Corman; Nancy Reichman
  4. Democracy for Polarized Committees: The Tale of Blotto's Lieutenants By Alessandra Casella; Jean-François Laslier; Antonin Macé
  5. Exposure to Refugees and Voting for the Far-Right: (Unexpected) Results from Austria By Steinmayr, Andreas
  6. Strategic Behavior in Exhaustive Ballot Voting: What Can We Learn from the FIFA World Cup 2018 and 2022 Host Elections? By Daniel Karabekyan
  7. Strategic vote trading in power-sharing systems By Dimitrios Xefteris; Nicholas Ziros
  8. Economic Targets and Loss-Aversion in International Environmental Cooperation By Doruk Iris
  9. Is Diversity in Capabilities Desirable When Adding Decision Makers? By BEN-YASHAR, Ruth; NITZAN, Shmuel
  10. A new Evaluation and Decision Making Framework Investigating the Elimination-by-Aspects Model in the Context of Transportation Projects' Investment Choices By Rayan Khraibani; André De Palma; Nathalie Picard; Isam Kaysi
  11. Discrimination, Social Identity, and Coordination: An Experiment By Vessela; ; ;

  1. By: Tom Coupe (Kyiv School of Economics); Olivier Gergaud (KEDGE Business School); Abdul Noury (New York University Abu Dhabi)
    Abstract: In this paper, we show that voters are biased but not strategic when voting for the FIFA best player award, the most prestigious award in soccer. We find that ‘similarity’ biases are substantial. Voters are four times more likely to vote for candidates with whom they share the national team or the same league team, and three times more likely to vote for a candidate with whom they share the same nationality. Despite presence of biases, we find little evidence for ‘strategic voting’, as voters who vote for one leading candidate (Messi) are more, rather than less, likely to also vote for his main competitor (Ronaldo). We also show that the impact of these biases on the total number of votes a candidate receives is fairly limited, as all candidates are likely to benefit (and lose) from these biases to a similar extent. The biases highlighted here could affect the outcome of the FIFA best player competition in the rare occasions where the difference in quality between the leading candidates is tiny.
    Keywords: bias; voting; football
    JEL: D72
    Date: 2016–03
  2. By: Sriya Iyer; Anand Shrivastava; ;
    Abstract: The effect of ethnic violence on electoral results provides useful insights into voter behaviour and the incentives for political parties in democratic societies. Religious riots have claimed more than 14,000 lives in India since 1950. We study the effect of Hindu-Muslim riots on election results in India. We combine data on riots with electoral data on state legislature elections and control variables on demographics and public goods provision to construct a unique panel data set for16 large states in India over a 25 year period commencing in 1977. We use anew instrument that draws upon the random variation in the day of the week that important Hindu festivals fall on in each year to isolate the causal effect of riots on electoral results. We find that riots occurring in the year preceding an election increase the vote share of the Bharatiya Janata Party in the election. We find suggestive evidence that communal polarisation is the likely mechanism driving our results.
    Date: 2015–10–01
  3. By: Dhaval M. Dave; Hope Corman; Nancy Reichman
    Abstract: Voting is an important form of civic participation in democratic societies but a fundamental right that many citizens do not exercise. This study investigates the effects of welfare reform in the U.S. in the 1990s on voting of low income women. Using the November Current Population Surveys with the added Voting and Registration Supplement for the years 1990 through 2004 and exploiting changes in welfare policy across states and over time, we estimate the causal effects of welfare reform on women’s voting registration and voting participation during the period during which welfare reform unfolded. We find robust evidence that welfare reform increased the likelihood of voting by about 4 percentage points, which translates to about a 10% increase relative to the baseline mean. The effects were largely confined to Presidential elections, were stronger in Democratic than Republican states, were stronger in states with stronger work incentive policies, and appeared to operate through employment, education, and income.
    JEL: D72 H53 I38 J21
    Date: 2016–03
  4. By: Alessandra Casella (Columbia University, NBER and CEPR); Jean-François Laslier (Paris School of Economics and CNRS); Antonin Macé (Aix-Marseille Universit´e (Aix-Marseille School of Economics), CNRS and EHESS)
    Abstract: In a polarized committee, majority voting disenfranchises the minority. By allowing voters to spend freely a fixed budget of votes over multiple issues, Storable Votes restores some minority power. We study a model of Storable Votes that highlights the hide-and-seek nature of the strategic game. With communication, the game replicates a classic Colonel Blotto game with asymmetric forces. We call the game without communication a decentralized Blotto game. We characterize theoretical results for this case and test both versions of the game in the laboratory. We find that, despite subjects deviating from equilibrium strategies, the minority wins as frequently as theory predicts. Because subjects understand the logic of the game – minority voters must concentrate votes unpredictably – the exact choices are of secondary importance. The result is an endorsement of the robustness of the voting rule.
    Keywords: Storable Votes, Polarization, Colonel Blotto, Tyranny of the Majority, Committees
    JEL: D71 C72 C92
    Date: 2016–03–11
  5. By: Steinmayr, Andreas (University of Munich)
    Abstract: An important concern about the surge in the number of arriving refugees in Europe is increased support for far-right, nationalist, anti-immigration parties. This paper studies a natural experiment in an Austrian state to identify the causal effect of exposure to refugees in the neighborhood on the support for the far-right Freedom Party of Austria (FPOE). In the state elections in September 2015 the FPOE doubled its vote share with a fierce anti-asylum campaign. Since only 42 percent of Upper Austrian communities hosted refugees at the time of the election, direct exposure to refugees varied at the local level. To account for the potential endogeneity in the distribution of refugees, I use pre-existing group accommodations as instrumental variable. To cope with the sudden inflow of large numbers of refugees, these buildings were used for refugee accommodation and thus strongly increase the probability of refugee presence in the community. In line with the contact hypothesis I find that hosting refugees in the community dampens the positive overall trend and decreases FPOE support by 4.42 percentage points in state elections. Further analysis using exit poll data reveals a positive effect on the optimism in the population that the integration of refugees can be managed. Placebo tests show that there were no effects in elections prior to 2015.
    Keywords: immigration, refugees, political economy, voting
    JEL: D72 J15 P16
    Date: 2016–03
  6. By: Daniel Karabekyan (National Research University Higher School of Economics)
    Abstract: There are many allegations about whether FIFA world cup host countries were chosen honestly or not. We analyse the results of the FIFA Executive Committee voting and reconstruct the set of possible voting situations compatible with the results of each stage. In both elections, we identify strategic behaviour and then analyse the results for honest voting under all compatible voting situations. For the 2018 FIFA world cup election Russia is chosen for all profiles. For the 2022 elections the result depends on the preferences of the FIFA president Sepp Blatter who served as a tie-breaker. If Sepp Blatter prefers Qatar over South Korea and Japan, then Qatar would have been chosen for all profiles. Otherwise there are the possibility that South Korea or Japan would have been chosen as the 2022 host country. Another fact is that if we consider possible vote buying, then it is shown, that the bribery of at least 2 committee members would have been required to guarantee winning of Russia bid and at least 1 member for Qatar.
    Keywords: exhaustive ballot, FIFA elections, manipulation
    JEL: D71
  7. By: Dimitrios Xefteris; Nicholas Ziros
    Abstract: This paper studies decentralized vote trading in a power-sharing system that follows the rules of strategic market games. In particular, we study a two-party election, in which prior to the voting stage voters are free to trade votes for money. Voters hold private information about both their ordinal and cardinal preferences, whereas their utilities are proportionally increasing in the vote share of their favorite party. In this framework we prove generic existence of a unique full trade equilibrium (an equilibrium in which nobody refrains from vote trading). We moreover argue that vote trading in such systems unambiguously improves voters' welfare.
    Keywords: vote trading, strategic market games, power sharing
    JEL: C72 D72 P16
    Date: 2016–03
  8. By: Doruk Iris (Department of Economics, Sogang University, Seoul)
    Abstract: In the standard emission problem, each country¡¯s ruling party decides on an optimal level of emissions by analyzing the cost and benefit to the country. However, such policy decisions are often influenced by political parties¡¯ incentives to be elected. Voters tend to give higher priority to economic issues than they do to environmental ones. As a result, political parties have additional incentives to reach a critical economic benefit level, at a cost of higher emission level, in order to satisfy voters¡¯ expectations in economic issues. Therefore, this study explores the implications of political parties being averse to insufficient economic performance relative to a critical economic target level on sustaining an international environmental agreement on emission levels. In doing so, we allow countries to have asymmetric concerns about economic targets, as well as asymmetric technology levels. We find that stronger concerns about economic targets deter the most cooperative emission levels countries could jointly sustain. Furthermore, technological asymmetry could either deepen or offset this impact. These results suggest that efforts on achieving substantial international environmental agreements should be supported at the citizen level to eliminate the adverse effects.
    Keywords: Emission Problem, Economic Targets, Loss-Aversion, International Environmental Agreements, Repeated Game.
    Date: 2016–02
  9. By: BEN-YASHAR, Ruth; NITZAN, Shmuel
    Abstract: When the benefit of making a correct decision is sufficiently high, even a slight increase in the probability of making such a decision justifies an increase in the number of decision makers. Applying a standard uncertain dichotomous choice benchmark setting, this study focuses on the relative desirability of two alternatives: adding individuals with capabilities identical to the existing ones and adding identical individuals with mean-preserving capabilities that depend on the states of nature. Our main result establishes that when the group applies the simple majority rule, variability in the capabilities of the new decision makers under the two states of nature, which is commonly observed in various decision-making settings, is less desirable in terms of the probability of making the correct decision.
    Keywords: decisional capabilities, group extension, asymmetry, homogeneity, diversity, mean preservation
    JEL: D81
    Date: 2016–03–16
  10. By: Rayan Khraibani (Université de Cergy Pontoise); André De Palma (ENS Cachan - École normale supérieure - Cachan, Department of Economics, Ecole Polytechnique - Polytechnique - X - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Nathalie Picard (Université de Cergy Pontoise); Isam Kaysi (American University of Beirut - American University of Beirut)
    Abstract: The Transportation Elimination-by-Aspects (TEBA) framework, a new evaluation and decision making framework (and methodology) for large transportation projects, is proposed to elicit, structure and quantify the preferences of stakeholder groups across project alternatives. The decision rule used for group decision making within TEBA is the individual non-compensatory model of choice elimination by aspects (EBA). TEBA is designed to bring out the decision rule employed by decision makers when ranking the options presented, incorporate various criteria types and ease communication of relevant information related to options and criteria for multiple stakeholder groups. It is a platform for democratizing the decision making process. The TEBA framework was tested using a case study investigating alternative land connections between Beirut and Damascus. Key results showed that (1) stakeholders have employed EBA in making decisions, (2) a defined group of decision makers will rank options differently when provided with modified sets of criteria, (3) the public sector and general public groups ranked Impact on Employment among the top criteria, (4) the most important criterion per group from EBA was as expected; (5) the EBA analysis suggested that only 3 to 4 criteria are significant in reaching a decision; (6) aggregation of user assigned weights masked relative importance of criteria in some cases; and (7) analysis of user assigned weights and Minimum Threshold (MT) values suggest higher risk perception with increased criterion importance. Policy implications include recommendation to reach out to stakeholders for input on decisions, including the “people” but refrain from relying on criteria weights assigned by “experts” and reduce the “experts”’ role in decision making. Also, it is recommended to model the decision making in a probabilistic framework rather than a deterministic “one score” approach, seek to identify a consensus ranking, place particular attention on determining the values of the criteria that emerged as “top” at the evaluation stage and continue to emphasize risk measures. Keywords: Transportation Investment, Collective Decision Making, Cost Benefit Analysis, Elimination by Aspects, Consensus Model / Joint Decision Making, Index of Dispersion, Behavioral Choice
    Keywords: Transportation Investment, Collective Decision Making, Cost Benefit Analysis, Elimination by Aspects, Consensus Model, Joint Decision Making, Index of Dispersion, Behavioral Choice
    Date: 2016
  11. By: Vessela; ; ;
    Abstract: This paper presents an experiment investigating the effect of social identity on hiring decisions. The question is whether people discriminate between own and other group candidates. Key features of the experimentare: First, to consider whether they do so in individual, as well as in joint decisions; Second, to document whether the identity of the co-decisionmaker matters in joint decisions. Substantial discrimination occurs in both individual and joint decision-making situations. In joint decisions,decision makers discriminate when deciding with someone from their own group, but not when deciding with someone from the other group.
    Keywords: social identity, discrimination, favoritism, coordination, experimental evidence
    JEL: C72 C91 D84 J71
    Date: 2016–04–25

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