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http://ssrn.com/abstract=2003531
 
 

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Quadratic Voting


Steven P. Lalley


Department of Statistics, University of Chicago

E. Glen Weyl


Microsoft Research New England; University of Chicago

December 29, 2014


Abstract:     
While the one-person-one-vote rule often leads to the tyranny of the majority, alternatives proposed by economists have been complex and fragile. By contrast, we argue that a simple mechanism, Quadratic Voting (QV), is robustly very efficient. Voters making a binary decision purchase votes from a clearinghouse paying the square of the number of votes purchased. If individuals take the chance of a marginal vote being pivotal as given, like a market price, QV is the unique pricing rule that is always efficient. In an independent private values environment, any type-symmetric Bayes-Nash equilibrium converges towards this efficient limiting outcome as the population grows large, with inefficiency decaying as 1/N. We use approximate calculations, which match our theorems in this case, to illustrate the robustness of QV, in contrast to existing mechanisms. We discuss applications in both (near-term) commercial and (long-term) social contexts.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 103

Keywords: social choice, public goods, large markets, costly voting, vote trading

JEL Classification: D47, D61, D71, C72, D82, H41, P16

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Date posted: February 13, 2012 ; Last revised: December 29, 2014

Suggested Citation

Lalley, Steven P. and Weyl, E. Glen, Quadratic Voting (December 29, 2014). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2003531 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2003531

Contact Information

Steven P. Lalley
Department of Statistics, University of Chicago ( email )
Eckhart Hall Room 108
5734 S. University Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
HOME PAGE: http://galton.uchicago.edu/~lalley/
Eric Glen Weyl (Contact Author)
Microsoft Research New England ( email )
One Memorial Drive, 14th Floor
Cambridge, MA 02142
United States
(857) 998-4513 (Phone)
HOME PAGE: http://www.glenweyl.com
University of Chicago ( email )
1126 East 59th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
(773) 702-4862 (Phone)
(773) 702-8490 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://www.glenweyl.com
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