A Game-Theoretic Explanation of the Administrative Lattice in Institutions of Higher Learning

Posted: 11 Jan 2001

See all articles by Andreas Ortmann

Andreas Ortmann

UNSW Australia Business School, School of Economics

Richard Squire

Fordham University School of Law

Abstract

We provide a game-theoretic model of academic organizations, focusing on the strategic interaction of prototypical overseers, administrators, and professors. By identifying key principal-agent games routinely played in colleges and universities, we begin to unpack the black box typically used to conceptualize these institutions. Our approach suggests an explanation for the seemingly inevitable drift of institutions of higher education into such well-documented phenomena as academic ratchet and administrative lattice and builds an understanding of the organizational conditions in which drift would be restrained.

Keywords: Principal-agent games; Organizational behavior of nonprofits in higher education; Administrative lattice; Academic ratchet.

JEL Classification: C72, D23, D82, I21

Suggested Citation

Ortmann, Andreas and Squire, Richard C., A Game-Theoretic Explanation of the Administrative Lattice in Institutions of Higher Learning. J of Economic Behavior & Organization, Vol. 43, No. 3, November 2000. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=251440

Andreas Ortmann (Contact Author)

UNSW Australia Business School, School of Economics ( email )

High Street
Sydney, NSW 2052
Australia

Richard C. Squire

Fordham University School of Law ( email )

150 West 62nd Street
New York, NY 10023
United States
212-964-1584 (Phone)

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