DP3886 Citizen Candidacy with Asymmetric Information

Author(s): Georges Casamatta, Wilfried Sand-Zantman
Publication Date: May 2003
Keyword(s): information, political competition, political economy
JEL(s): D72, D82
Programme Areas: Public Economics
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=3886

We extend a simple version of the citizen candidates model (developed by Osborne-Slivinsky (1996) and Besley-Coate (1997)) to an asymmetric information setting, in which the type of a given individual is assumed to be private information. Focusing on a particular class of perfect Bayesian equilibria, we show that there exist two kinds of equilibria. In the first one, both non-median types become candidates and those equilibria generalize to any number of (potential) candidates. In the second one, only one of the non-median types chooses to become candidates for the election and those equilibria hold for a number of (potential) candidates at most equal to three. This is in sharp contrast with the complete information framework in which only the median type individuals stand for office when the entry cost is sufficiently low.