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Essays in Information Transmission and Institution Design

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Essays in Information Transmission and Institution Design

Cheng, Qingqing (2017) Essays in Information Transmission and Institution Design. PhD thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

This thesis consists of three essays in information transmission and institution design. Chapter 1 constructs a model of information transmission. The model was set up with an informed sender and two uninformed receivers, where the sender wants to convince the receivers to take a certain action. We analyze strategic information transmission model with two parameters, one is different levels of persuasive function of the channels; another is different degrees of connection between the receivers. We show that if persuasive function is a linear or convex function, the sender should invests all expenditure to one channel with higher level of persuasive function and higher degree of information transmission of the receiver; while if persuasive function is a concave function, three possible optimal behaviours of the sender are investing to one channel, both channels equally, or both channels unequally. Given two concave function examples, we show some decision rules for the sender’s optimal expenditure allocation. Specifically, we show that it is not always to allocate expenditure in both channels equally in symmetric model; it is always to invest all expenditure to only one channel when another channel has very low level of persuasive function, or very low degree of connection between the receivers, and it is always to increase expenditure in one channel when the degree of information transmission of the corresponding receiver increases in asymmetric model.
Chapter 2 studies two scenarios in a formal analysis of scientists’ effort provision in research and dissemination. One is a simultaneous problem that the sender offers effort to send signal to two types of audiences, such as experts and public; another is a sequential problem that the sender offers effort in academic research, and then sends signal to one type of audiences to representation with effort in science popularization. We investigate how the scientist should divide their time or energy between academic research and science popularization to obtain maximum utility. Consider the same probability and different probability functions at two dimensional for each scenario. We show the optimal allocation of effort depends on the weight of payoff from academic research and science popularization, and the difference in two probability functions between two signals, or between signal and representation. Specifically, in scenario one, if there exist polarization in academic research and science popularization, we could prevent polarization by increasing the ratio of the weights of payoff from dissemination and research using incentives to guarantee the scientist keep the allocation of effort as before. In scenario two, the result shows that we should put equal effort on research and dissemination for scientific achievements transformation no matter how difference in two probability functions between signal and representation.
Chapter 3 constructs a simple model of direct democracy with supermajority rule and different preference intensities for two sides of a referendum: reform versus status quo. Two parties spend money and effort to mobilize their voters. We characterize the set of pure strategy Nash equilibria. We investigate the optimal majority rule that maximizes voters’ welfare. Using an example, we show that if the preference intensity of the status quo side is relatively high, the higher preference intensity of the status quo side, the higher the optimal majority rule. While, if the preference intensity of status quo side is relatively low, the optimal majority rule decreases if the preference intensity of the status quo side increases. We also show that when the preference intensity of the status quo side is higher, or the easiness to mobilize voters on the status quo side is lower, the optimal majority rule is more likely to be supermajority.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Economics
Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Authors:Cheng, Qingqing
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Ph. D.
Program:Economics
Date:31 July 2017
Thesis Supervisor(s):Li, Ming
ID Code:983085
Deposited By: QINGQING CHENG
Deposited On:08 Nov 2017 21:03
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:56
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