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Published August 2, 2017 | Submitted
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Information aggregation in standing and ad hoc committees


This paper reports results from a laboratory experiment comparing voting behavior and decision making efficiency in standing and ad hoc committees, where decisions are made by unanimity rule. We also compare sequential and simultaneous (secret ballot) voting procedures. The data are remarkably consistent across treatments, in both qualitative (comparative statics) and quantitative terms. The different procedures and the ad hoc or standing nature of the committees generally do not seem to lead to the selection of different equilibria, with the exception of some evidence of bandwagon effects in the sequential procedure.

Additional Information

Revised version. Original: December 2007. This paper was prepared for the invited session "Information Aggregation by Voting" at the 2008 AEA Meetings, New Orleans. We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the National Science Foundation (SES-0079301, SES-0450712, SES-0551014), the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, the Dutch National Science Foundation (VICI 453.03.606), CASSEL at UCLA, SSEL at Caltech, and the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton. We thank David Austen-Smith for comments, and Chulyoung Kim, Uliana Popova, and Stephanie Wang for research assistance. Published as Ali, S.N., Goeree, J.K., Kartik, N., & Palfrey, T.R. (2008). Information aggregation in standing and ad hoc committees. The American economic review, 98(2), 181-186.

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