Voting Agendas and Preferences on Trees: Theory and Practice
- American Economic Journal: Microeconomics (Forthcoming)
We study how parliaments and committees select one out of several
alternatives when options cannot be ordered along a "left-right"
axis. Which voting agendas are used in practice, and how
should they be designed? We assume preferences are single-peaked
on a tree and study convex agendas where, at each stage in the voting
process, the tree of remaining alternatives is divided into two
subtrees that are subjected to a Yes-No vote. We show that strategic
voting coincides with sincere, unsophisticated voting. Based on
inference results and revealed preference arguments, we illustrate
the empirical implications for two case studies.
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