nep-cdm New Economics Papers
on Collective Decision-Making
Issue of 2020‒09‒14
fifteen papers chosen by
Stan C. Weeber, McNeese State University

  1. Some regrettable grading scale effects under different versions of evaluative voting By Antoinette Baujard; Herrade Igersheim; Isabelle Lebon
  2. Economic Deprivation and Radical Voting: Evidence from Germany By Florian Dorn; Clemens Fuest; Lea Immel; Florian Neumeier
  3. Retelling the Story of the 2017 French Presidential Election: The contribution of Approval Voting By Antoinette Baujard; Isabelle Lebon
  4. A Tragic Solution to the Collective Action Problem: Implications for Corruption, Con‡flict and Inequality By Ricardo Nieva
  5. Globalization, Time-Preferences, and Populist Voting By Thomas Aronsson; Clemens Hetschko; Ronnie Schöb
  6. Proportional Participatory Budgeting with Cardinal Utilities By Dominik Peters; Grzegorz Pierczy\'nski; Piotr Skowron
  7. Mixed Member Proportional; equal influence and assembly size By Stensholt, Eivind
  8. Regional Variations in the Brexit Vote: Causes and Potential Consequences By Blackaby, David H.; Drinkwater, Stephen; Robinson, Catherine
  9. Does Vote Trading Improve Welfare? By Alessandra Casella; Antonin Macé
  10. Finding Core Members of Cooperative Games using Agent-Based Modeling By Daniele Vernon-Bido; Andrew J. Collins
  11. Positionality-Weighted Aggregation Methods on Cumulative Voting By Takeshi Kato; Yasuhiro Asa; Misa Owa
  12. Implications of the Tradeoff between Inside and Outside Social Status in Group Choice By Takaaki Hamada
  13. Selection into Leadership and Dishonest Behavior of Leaders: A Gender Experiment By Kerstin Grosch, Kerstin; Müller, Stephan; Rau, Holger A.; Zhurakhovska, Lilia
  14. Who Voted for Trump? Populism and Social Capital By Giuliano, Paola; Wacziarg, Romain
  15. Axioms for Defeat in Democratic Elections By Wesley H. Holliday; Eric Pacuit

  1. By: Antoinette Baujard (Université Jean Monnet, Université de Lyon, GATE Lyon Saint-Etienne UMR 5824, 42023 Saint-Etienne Cedex 2, France); Herrade Igersheim (CNRS and BETA, University of Strasbourg, 61 avenue de la Forêt Noire, 67085 Strasbourg, France); Isabelle Lebon (Normandie Université, Unicaen, CREM, UMR CNRS 6211, France. Email: , corresponding author: Esplanade de la Paix, 14000 Caen, France.)
    Abstract: Many voters seem to appreciate the greater freedom of expression afforded by alternative voting rules; in evaluative voting, for example, longer grading scales and/or negative grades seem desirable in so far as, all other things being equal, they allow greater expressivity. The paper studies to what extent the behavior of voters, and the outcomes of elections, are sensitive to the grading scale employed in evaluative (or “range”) voting. To this end, we use voting data from an experiment conducted in parallel with the 2017 French presidential election, which aimed to scrutinize the negative grade effect and the length effect in grading scales. First, this paper confirms that the introduction of a negative grade disfavors “polarizing” candidates, those whose political discourse provokes divisive debate, but more generally we establish that it disfavors major candidates and favors minor candidates. Second, under non-negative scales, polarizing candidates may be relatively disfavored by longer scales, especially compared with candidates who attract only infrequent media coverage and who are little known among voters. Third, longer scales assign different weights to the votes of otherwise equal voters, depending on their propensity to vote strategically. Overall, we observe that the benefits of the expressivity provided by longer scales or negative grades need to be balanced against the controversial advantage these give to minor candidates, and their tendency to undermine the principle that each vote should count equally in the outcome of the election.
    Keywords: Evaluative Voting, Approval Voting, In Situ Experiment, Voting Scale Design, Behavioral Bias
    JEL: D72 C93
    Date: 2020
  2. By: Florian Dorn; Clemens Fuest; Lea Immel; Florian Neumeier
    Abstract: This paper studies the impact of economic deprivation on radical voting. Using a unique dataset covering different indicators of economic deprivation as well as federal election outcomes at the county-level in Germany for the period from 1998 to 2017, we examine whether economic deprivation affects the share of votes for radical right and left-wing parties using instrumental variable estimation. Our results suggest that an increase in economic deprivation has a sizeable effect on the support for radical parties at both ends of the political spectrum. The higher a county’s rate of relative poverty, the average shortfall from the national median income, and the poverty line, the higher the vote share of radical right-wing and left-wing parties. We also provide evidence that regional variation in economic deprivation gave rise to the electoral success of the populist right-wing party AfD in the federal election of 2017. Our findings thus indicate that a rise in economic deprivation may undermine moderate political forces and be a threat to political stability.
    Keywords: Economic deprivation, inequality, political polarization, radical voting, Germany
    JEL: I32 D31 D73
    Date: 2020
  3. By: Antoinette Baujard (Université Jean Monnet, Université de Lyon, GATE Lyon Saint-Etienne UMR 5824, 42023 Saint-Etienne Cedex 2, France); Isabelle Lebon (Normandie Université, Unicaen, CREM, UMR CNRS 6211, France. Email: , corresponding author: Esplanade de la Paix, 14000 Caen, France.)
    Abstract: This paper proposes an alternative reading of the politics of the 2017 French presidential election, using an unstudied source of information on voters’ preferences: experimental data on approval voting. We provide a new narrative of the election process and outcome. The principal approach for understanding the political context has for many decades been a distinction between left and right-wing political forces. We introduce a method for generating an endogenous political axis, and construct three indices so that we might understand how and why the conventional approach has become progressively irrelevant. We find no gender effect, but instead an age effect. Voters, especially those who belong to generations at the beginning or the end of their working life, use their vote in national elections to support radical change; and the younger the voters, the less they conform to a left-right axis. However, this desire for change does not represent a rejection of existing parties, as the official results would suggest. Rather, the approval results suggest an erosion in the voters’ minds of barriers between distinct political camps, and between traditional and populist parties.
    Keywords: French Presidential election, Left-Right axis, Cultural Backlash, Political space, Approval voting, voting experiment
    JEL: C93 D72
    Date: 2020
  4. By: Ricardo Nieva (Department of Economics, Universidad de Lima)
    Abstract: We study the role of an enforcer in the effectiveness of selective incentives in solving the collective action problem when groups take part in a contest. Cost functions exhibit constant elasticity of marginal effort costs. If prize valuations are homogeneous, our source of heterogeneity induces full cost-sharing and the …first-best individual contributions; further, the group probability of winning goes up. With heterogeneity in prize valuations, an increase in the effectiveness of the enforcer in confl‡ict increases the group probability of winning only if the prize valuation of the enforcer is lower than de Lehmer mean of those of the other players; however, the induced partial cost sharing is not group efficient. If effectiveness "tends to infi…nity", the collective action problem is solved with partial cost-sharing if that prize valuation is not too low. Tragically, if productivity is low (if the prize is private in our set up) this occurs with corrupt coalitions which have been shown to form together with confl‡ict and inequality endogenously; otherwise, this occurs with non corrupt coalitions. Further, even if such valuation is too low the group winning probability goes up. In this latter case, over cost-sharing yields group efficiency.
    Keywords: Heterogeneity, Corruption, Collective Contests, Inequality, Selective Incentives
    JEL: D72 D73 D74
    Date: 2020–08
  5. By: Thomas Aronsson; Clemens Hetschko; Ronnie Schöb
    Abstract: Societies see growing support for populist politicians who advocate an end to globalization. Our behavioral economics model links impatience to voters’ appraisals of an income shock due to globalization that is associated with short-run costs and delayed gains. The model shows that impatient individuals may reject further globalization if they are subject to borrowing constraints. Using German data, we confirm that impatient voters choose right-wing anti-globalist parties. Similarly, we show for the United Kingdom that a preference for immediate gratification increases the support for right-wing anti-globalist parties as well as for Brexit. A policy implication of our study is that governments may use up-front redistribution to gain voters’ support for further globalization.
    Keywords: globalization, time-preference, impatience, time-inconsistency, populism, Brexit, up-front redistribution
    JEL: D72 D91 F15 F61 F68 H53
    Date: 2020
  6. By: Dominik Peters; Grzegorz Pierczy\'nski; Piotr Skowron
    Abstract: We study voting rules for participatory budgeting, where a group of voters collectively decides which projects should be funded using a common budget. We allow the projects to have arbitrary costs, and the voters to have arbitrary additive valuations over the projects. We formulate two axioms that guarantee proportional representation to groups of voters with common interests. To the best of our knowledge, all known rules for participatory budgeting do not satisfy either of the two axioms; in addition we show that the most prominent proportional rules for committee elections (such as Proportional Approval Voting) cannot be adapted to arbitrary costs nor to additive valuations so that they would satisfy our axioms of proportionality. We construct a simple and attractive voting rule that satisfies one of our axioms (for arbitrary costs and arbitrary additive valuations), and that can be evaluated in polynomial time. We prove that our other stronger axiom is also satisfiable, though by a computationally more expensive and less natural voting rule.
    Date: 2020–08
  7. By: Stensholt, Eivind (Dept. of Business and Management Science, Norwegian School of Economics)
    Abstract: With the present (2020) tally rules, the number of seats in the Bundestag is highly volatile. In 2017 it got 709 seats, 111 of them extra-ordinary. The tally rules may double the influence of a voter who splits the vote; the proportionality requirement may multiply an unfortunate side effect by a high factor. The paper explains when and how this happens. A ballot’s combination of Erststimme and Zweitstimme is information that now is ignored; the tally is as if Erststimme and Zweitsimme were collected in different ballot boxes. The suggested faithful accounting uses this information. With 2017 data, it is estimated that the number of extra-ordinary seats would have been reduced by about 74, to 37. Tallying 2017 data with present rules and CDU/CSU as one party reduces the size by 42 seats; combined with faithful accounting, the reduction is more than 74.
    Keywords: Mixed member proportional; equal influence; legitimacy; assembly size
    JEL: D72
    Date: 2020–08–31
  8. By: Blackaby, David H. (Swansea University); Drinkwater, Stephen (University of Roehampton); Robinson, Catherine (University of Kent)
    Abstract: There were large regional differentials in the Brexit vote. Most notably, the percentage voting to leave the EU ranged from 38% in Scotland and 40% in London to 59% in the East and West Midlands. Turnout also varied across Britain, from a low of 67% in Scotland to 77% in the South East and South West. Existing empirical studies have tended to focus on the demographic composition of geographical areas to identify the key socio-economic characteristics in explaining spatial and other variations in the leave vote - with age and education found to be important drivers. We use the British Social Attitudes Survey to provide a more nuanced picture of regional differences in the Brexit vote by examining in particular the role that national identity and attitudes towards immigration played. In addition to education, we find that national identity exerted a strong influence on the probability voting leave in several English regions, including the East, North East, London and South East. Whereas, over and above this, concerns about immigration had a quantitatively large and highly significant impact in all regions bar London, and the East to a lesser extent. Differences by country of birth are also explored, with national identity and concerns about immigration having a larger impact for the English-born. Our findings are then discussed in the light of changes that have affected regional economies during the process of increased globalisation, austerity, the current Covid-19 crisis and recent UK government announcements to rebalance the economy.
    Keywords: Brexit, regional economies, globalisation, immigration
    JEL: D72 R11 F60 J61
    Date: 2020–08
  9. By: Alessandra Casella (Columbia University [New York]); Antonin Macé (PSE - Paris School of Economics, PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement)
    Abstract: Voters have strong incentives to increase their inuence by trading votes, a practice indeed believed to be common. But is vote trading welfare-improving or welfare-decreasing? We review the theoretical literature and, when available, its related experimental tests. We begin with the analysis of logrolling { the exchange of votes for votes, considering both explicit vote exchanges and implicit vote trades engineered by bundling issues in a single bill. We then focus on vote markets, where votes can be traded against a numeraire. We cover competitive markets, strategic market games, decentralized bargaining, and more centralized mechanisms, such as quadratic voting, where votes can be bought at a quadratic cost. We conclude with procedures allowing voters to shift votes across decisions { to trade votes with oneself only { such as storable votes or a modi_ed form of quadratic voting. We _nd that vote trading and vote markets are typically ine_cient; more encouraging results are obtained by allowing voters to allocate votes across decisions.
    Keywords: logrolling,vote trading,storable votes,quadratic voting,bundling,vote markets
    Date: 2020–08
  10. By: Daniele Vernon-Bido; Andrew J. Collins
    Abstract: Agent-based modeling (ABM) is a powerful paradigm to gain insight into social phenomena. One area that ABM has rarely been applied is coalition formation. Traditionally, coalition formation is modeled using cooperative game theory. In this paper, a heuristic algorithm is developed that can be embedded into an ABM to allow the agents to find coalition. The resultant coalition structures are comparable to those found by cooperative game theory solution approaches, specifically, the core. A heuristic approach is required due to the computational complexity of finding a cooperative game theory solution which limits its application to about only a score of agents. The ABM paradigm provides a platform in which simple rules and interactions between agents can produce a macro-level effect without the large computational requirements. As such, it can be an effective means for approximating cooperative game solutions for large numbers of agents. Our heuristic algorithm combines agent-based modeling and cooperative game theory to help find agent partitions that are members of a games' core solution. The accuracy of our heuristic algorithm can be determined by comparing its outcomes to the actual core solutions. This comparison achieved by developing an experiment that uses a specific example of a cooperative game called the glove game. The glove game is a type of exchange economy game. Finding the traditional cooperative game theory solutions is computationally intensive for large numbers of players because each possible partition must be compared to each possible coalition to determine the core set; hence our experiment only considers games of up to nine players. The results indicate that our heuristic approach achieves a core solution over 90% of the time for the games considered in our experiment.
    Date: 2020–08
  11. By: Takeshi Kato; Yasuhiro Asa; Misa Owa
    Abstract: The issue in solving social problems is how to respect minority opinions, which are often ignored in general majority rules. To build consensus on pluralistic values and make social choices in consideration of minority opinions, we propose aggregation methods that give weighting to the minority's positionality on cardinal cumulative voting. Based on quadratic and linear voting, we formulated three weighted aggregation methods that differ in the ratio of votes to cumulative points and the weighting of the minority to all members, and calculated the frequency distributions of the aggregation results, assuming that the distributions of votes follow normal distributions. From these calculation results, we found that minority opinions are likely to be reflected as weighting increases proportionally in two of the above three methods. This means that Sen and Gotoh's idea of considering the social position of unfortunate people on ordinal ranking, that welfare economics considers under an axiomatic approach, was shown by weighting the minority's positionality on cardinal voting. In addition, we can know the contents such as the number and positionality of the minority from the analysis of the aggregation results. It will be useful for promoting mutual understanding between the majority and minority by visualizing the contents of the proposed aggregation methods interactively in the consensus-building process. With the further development of information technology, the consensus building on cardinal choices based on big data will be necessary. We would like to use the proposed aggregation methods for making social choices for pluralistic values such as social, environmental, and economic.
    Date: 2020–08
  12. By: Takaaki Hamada
    Abstract: We investigate a group choice problem of agents pursuing social status. We assume heterogeneous agents want to signal their private information (ability, income, patience, altruism, etc.) to others, facing tradeoff between "outside status" (desire to be perceived in prestigious group from outside observers) and "inside status" (desire to be perceived talented from peers inside their group). To analyze the tradeoff, we develop two stage signaling model in which each agent firstly chooses her group and secondly chooses her action in the group she chose. They face binary choice problems both in group and action choices. Using cutoff strategy, we construct an partially separating equilibrium such that there are four populations: (i) choosing high group with strong incentive for action in the group, (ii) high group with weak incentive, (iii) low group with strong incentive, and (iv) low group with weak incentive. By comparative statics results, we find some spillover effects from a certain group to another, on how four populations change, when a policy is taken in each group. These results have rich implications for group choice problems like school, firm or residential preference.
    Date: 2020–08
  13. By: Kerstin Grosch, Kerstin (Institute for Advanced Studies, Vienna, Austria); Müller, Stephan (University of Goettingen, Germany); Rau, Holger A. (University of Goettingen, Germany); Zhurakhovska, Lilia (University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany)
    Abstract: Leaders often have to weigh ethical against monetary consequences. Such situations may evoke psychological costs from being dishonest and dismissing higher monetary benefits for others. In a within-subjects experiment, we analyze such a dilemma. We first measure individual dishonest behavior when subjects report the outcome of a die roll, which determines their payoffs. Subsequently, they act as leaders and report payoffs for a group including themselves. In our main treatment, subjects can apply for leadership, whereas in the control treatment, we assign leadership randomly. Results reveal that women behave more dishonestly as leaders while men behave similarly in both the individual and the group decision. For female leaders, we find that sorting into leadership is not related to individual honesty preferences. In the control we find that female leaders do not increase dishonesty. A follow-up study reveals that female leaders become more dishonest after assuming leadership, as they align dishonest behavior with their belief on group members’ honesty preferences.
    Keywords: leadership, decision for others, lab experiment, gender differences, dishonesty
    JEL: C91 H26 J16
    Date: 2020–08
  14. By: Giuliano, Paola (University of California, Los Angeles); Wacziarg, Romain (UCLA Anderson School of Management)
    Abstract: We argue that low levels of social capital are conducive to the electoral success of populist movements. Using a variety of data sources for the 2016 US Presidential election at the county and individual levels, we show that social capital, measured either by the density of memberships in civic, religious and sports organizations or by generalized trust, is significantly negatively correlated with the vote share and favorability rating of Donald Trump around the time of the election.
    Keywords: social capital, voting behavior, populism
    JEL: D72 Z1
    Date: 2020–08
  15. By: Wesley H. Holliday; Eric Pacuit
    Abstract: We propose six axioms concerning when one candidate should defeat another in a democratic election involving two or more candidates. Five of the axioms are widely satisfied by known voting procedures. The sixth axiom is a weakening of Kenneth Arrow's famous condition of the Independence of Irrelevant Alternatives (IIA). We call this weakening Coherent IIA. We prove that the five axioms plus Coherent IIA single out a voting procedure studied in our recent work: Split Cycle. In particular, Split Cycle is the most resolute voting procedure satisfying the six axioms for democratic defeat. In addition, we analyze how Split Cycle escapes Arrow's Impossibility Theorem and related impossibility results.
    Date: 2020–08

This nep-cdm issue is ©2020 by Stan C. Weeber. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.