Skip to main content
Article thumbnail
Location of Repository

Multitasking, limited liability and political agency

By John William Hatfield and Gerard Padro i Miquel

Abstract

This paper considers a political accountability framework in which the politician exerts unobserved e¤ort in two independent dimensions. Since the worst payo¤ to the politician is removal from o¢ ce, this contracting environment exhibits limited liability. We show that limited liability implies that it is di¢ cult to implement vectors that devote attention to both dimensions. Hence citizens must decide between a high e¤ort allocation to a single task or a low total e¤ort allocation split between the two tasks. Given this, we consider why we do not observe more direct elections of separate ministers, which would allow for better balanced allocations of e¤ort. We …nd that if elections are primarily used as devices to weed out low type politicians, a united executive dominates one with divided accountability. These results give support to the view that elections act chie‡y as selection devices

Topics: JA Political science (General)
Publisher: John William Hatfield and Gerard Padro i Miquel
Year: 2006
OAI identifier: oai:eprints.lse.ac.uk:4824
Provided by: LSE Research Online
Download PDF:
Sorry, we are unable to provide the full text but you may find it at the following location(s):
  • http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/4824/... (external link)
  • http://faculty-gsb.stanford.ed... (external link)
  • http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/4824/ (external link)
  • Suggested articles


    To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.