NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Democracy for Polarized Committees: The Tale of Blotto's Lieutenants

Alessandra Casella, Jean Francois Laslier, Antonin Macé

NBER Working Paper No. 22231
Issued in May 2016
NBER Program(s):POL

In polarized committees, majority voting disenfranchises the minority. Allowing voters to spend freely a fixed budget of votes over multiple issues restores some minority power. However, it also creates a complex strategic scenario: a hide-and-seek game between majority and minority voters that corresponds to a decentralized version of the Colonel Blotto game. We offer theoretical results and bring the game to the laboratory. The minority wins as frequently as theory predicts, despite subjects deviating from equilibrium strategies. Because subjects understand the logic of the game — minority voters must concentrate votes unpredictably — the exact choices are of secondary importance, a result that vouches for the robustness of the voting rule to strategic mistakes.

You may purchase this paper on-line in .pdf format from SSRN.com ($5) for electronic delivery.

Access to NBER Papers

You are eligible for a free download if you are a subscriber, a corporate associate of the NBER, a journalist, an employee of the U.S. federal government with a ".GOV" domain name, or a resident of nearly any developing country or transition economy.

If you usually get free papers at work/university but do not at home, you can either connect to your work VPN or proxy (if any) or elect to have a link to the paper emailed to your work email address below. The email address must be connected to a subscribing college, university, or other subscribing institution. Gmail and other free email addresses will not have access.

E-mail:

Supplementary materials for this paper:

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w22231

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded* these:
Morten and Oliveira w22158 Paving the Way to Development: Costly Migration and Labor Market Integration
Acemoglu, Egorov, and Sonin w22174 Social Mobility and Stability of Democracy: Re-evaluating De Tocqueville
Gabaix w21848 Behavioral Macroeconomics Via Sparse Dynamic Programming
Dupas and Miguel w22235 Impacts and Determinants of Health Levels in Low-Income Countries
Ashraf, Bau, Nunn, and Voena w22417 Bride Price and Female Education
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Themes
Data
People
About

National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us