Discussion paper

DP13148 Markets for Information: An Introduction

We survey a recent and growing literature on markets for information. We offer
a comprehensive view of information markets through an integrated model of consumers,
information intermediaries, and rms. The model embeds a large set of applications
ranging from sponsored search advertising to credit scores to information
sharing among competitors. We then review a mechanism design approach to selling
information in greater detail. We distinguish between ex ante sales of information
(the buyer acquires an information structure) and ex post sales (the buyer pays for
speci c realizations). We relate this distinction to the different products that brokers,
advertisers, and publishers use to trade consumer information online. We discuss the
endogenous limits to the trade of information that derive from its potential adverse
use for consumers. Finally we revisit the role of recommender systems and arti cial
intelligence systems as markets for indirect information.


Bergemann, D and A Bonatti (eds) (2018), “DP13148 Markets for Information: An Introduction”, CEPR Press Discussion Paper No. 13148. https://cepr.org/publications/dp13148