Discussion paper

DP16892 Strategic Ignorance and Information Design

We study information design in strategic settings when agents can publicly refuse
to view their private signals. The requirement that agents must be willing to view their
signals represents additional constraints for the designer, comparable to participation
constraints in mechanism design. Ignoring those constraints may lead to substantial
divergence between the designer’s intent and actual outcomes, even in the case where
the designer seeks to maximize the agents’ payoffs. We characterize implementable
distributions over states and actions. Requiring robustness to strategic ignorance undoes
two standard information design results: providing information conditional on
players’ choices rather than all at once may hurt the designer, and communication
between players may help her.


Taneva, I and T Wiseman (2022), ‘DP16892 Strategic Ignorance and Information Design‘, CEPR Discussion Paper No. 16892. CEPR Press, Paris & London. https://cepr.org/publications/dp16892