Discussion paper

DP7476 Adversarial versus Inquisitorial Testimony

An arbiter can decide a case on the basis of his priors, or the two parties to the conflict may present further evidence. The parties may misrepresent evidence in their favor at a cost. At equilibrium the two parties never testify together. When the evidence is much in favor of one party, this party testifies. When the evidence is close to the prior mean, no party testifies. We compare this outcome under a purely adversarial procedure with the outcome under a purely inquisitorial procedure (Emons and Fluet 2009). We provide sufficient conditions on when one procedure is better than the other one.


Emons, W and C Fluet (2009), ‘DP7476 Adversarial versus Inquisitorial Testimony‘, CEPR Discussion Paper No. 7476. CEPR Press, Paris & London. https://cepr.org/publications/dp7476