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Effects of Agenda Access Costs in Spatial Committee Setting

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Type: Working Paper
Author: Herzberg, Roberta; Wilson, Rick K.
Date: 1990
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/4176
Sector: Social Organization
Subject(s): Workshop
decision making
game theory
Abstract: "In this paper we examine what decision making costs mean for outcomes in collective choice settings. Our specific focus is with simple majority rule spatial voting games. Wellknown findings for such games show that outcomes will cycle throughout the policy space given the frictionless nature of simple majority rule processes. Along with many others, we are uncomfortable with these theoretical results. Our discomfort stems from failing to observe such instability in natural empirical settings. Decision makers remind us that there are real costs to building agendas which are absent in our theoretical models. We use decision making costs as a way of introducing friction into the agenda process. Beginning from the same unconstrained spatial models, we introduce agenda access costs which we show are sufficient to induce equilibria in an otherwise unstable majority rule process."

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