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Words Get in the Way: The Effect of Deliberation in Collective Decision-Making

Iaryczower, Matias and Shi, Xiaoxia and Shum, Matthew (2013) Words Get in the Way: The Effect of Deliberation in Collective Decision-Making. Social Science Working Paper, 1375. California Institute of Technology , Pasadena, CA. (Unpublished)

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We estimate a model of strategic voting with incomplete information in which committee members - judges in the US courts of appeals - have the opportunity to communicate before casting their votes. The model is characterized by multiple equilibria, and partial identification of model parameters. We obtain confidence regions for these parameters using a two-step estimation procedure that allows flexibly for characteristics of the alternatives and the individuals. To quantify the effects of deliberation on outcomes, we compare the probability of mistakes in the court with deliberation with a counterfactual of no pre-vote communication. We find that for most configurations of the court in the confidence set, in the best case scenario deliberation produces a small potential gain in the effectiveness of the court, and in the worst case it leads to large potential losses.

Item Type:Report or Paper (Working Paper)
Shum, Matthew0000-0002-6262-915X
Additional Information:We are grateful to Alessandro Lizzeri, Adam Meirowitz, Greg Pavlov, Maria Goltsman, Leeat Yariv, and seminar participants at Emory University, Erasmus University's Workshop in Political Economy 2012, NYU, Princeton University, Singapore Management University, Stanford (SITE 2012), University College London, University of Chicago, Universite de Montreal, University of Western Ontario, and Washington University for comments. Financial support from NSF Grants SES-1061326 (Iaryczower) and SES-1061266 (Shum) is gratefully acknowledged. We thank Alex Bolton and Emerson Melo for excellent research assistance.
Group:Social Science Working Papers
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Subject Keywords:partial identification, deliberation, communication equilibrium, voting
Series Name:Social Science Working Paper
Issue or Number:1375
Classification Code:JEL: D72, C35, D82
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20170726-161227615
Persistent URL:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:79462
Deposited By: Hanna Storlie
Deposited On:07 Aug 2017 18:37
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 18:20

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