Viewpoint: Decision-Making in Committees

34 Pages Posted: 27 Apr 2009

See all articles by Hao Li

Hao Li

University of Toronto - Department of Economics; Queen's University - Department of Economics

Wing Suen

The University of Hong Kong - School of Economics and Finance

Abstract

This article reviews recent developments in the theory of committee decision-making. A committee consists of self-interested members who make a public decision by aggregating imperfect information dispersed among them according to a pre-specified decision rule. We focus on costly information acquisition, strategic information aggregation, and rules and processes that enhance the quality of the committee decision. Seeming inefficiencies of the committee decision-making process such as over-cautiousness, voting, and delay emerge as partial remedies to these incentive problems. (Cet article passé en revue certains développements récents dans la théorie de la prise de décision en comité. Un comité est défini comme un groupe de membres qui ont des intérêts particuliers et qui prennent une décision publique en agrégeant une information imparfaite et dispersée à travers le groupe selon une règle de decision pré-établie. Les auteurs portent leur attention sur lacquisition coûteuse dinformation, lagrégation de linformation stratégique, et les règles et procédures qui accroîssent la qualité de la decision en comité. Ce qui apparaît comme des inefficacités du processus de prise de décision en comité (sur-précaution, votes, délais) savère être des remèdes partiels aux problèmes dincitation.)

Suggested Citation

Li, Hao and Suen, Wing C., Viewpoint: Decision-Making in Committees. Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, Vol. 42, Issue 2, pp. 359-392, May/mai 2009. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1375897 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-5982.2009.01512.x

Hao Li

University of Toronto - Department of Economics ( email )

150 St. George Street
Toronto, Ontario M5S 3G7
Canada
416-978-5105 (Phone)

Queen's University - Department of Economics ( email )

Dunning Hall
Kingston, Ontario K7L 3N6
Canada
613-533-2275 (Phone)
613-533-6668 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.econ.queensu.ca/pub/faculty/li/

Wing C. Suen

The University of Hong Kong - School of Economics and Finance ( email )

8th Floor Kennedy Town Centre
23 Belcher's Street
Kennedy Town
Hong Kong
852 2859 1052 (Phone)
852 2548 1152 (Fax)

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