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An Explanation of Anomalous Behavior in Models of Political Participation

  • JACOB K. GOEREE (a1) and CHARLES A. HOLT (a2)


This paper characterizes behavior with “noisy” decision making for models of political interaction characterized by simultaneous binary decisions. Applications include: voting participation games, candidate entry, the volunteer's dilemma, and collective action problems with a contribution threshold. A simple graphical device is used to derive comparative statics and other theoretical properties of a “quantal response” equilibrium, and the resulting predictions are compared with Nash equilibria that arise in the limiting case of no noise. Many anomalous data patterns in laboratory experiments based on these games can be explained in this manner.


Corresponding author

Jacob K. Goeree is Professor, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences, California Institute of Technology, Mail Code 228-77, Pasadena, CA 91125 (
Charles A. Holt is Professor, Department of Economics, P.O. Box 400182, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA 22904-4182 ( or


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An Explanation of Anomalous Behavior in Models of Political Participation

  • JACOB K. GOEREE (a1) and CHARLES A. HOLT (a2)


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