Review of Economic Design

, Volume 11, Issue 2, pp 101–124 | Cite as

Tullock and Hirshleifer: a meeting of the minds

  • José Alcalde
  • Matthias Dahm
Original Paper


We introduce the serial contest by building on the desirable properties of two prominent contest games. This family of contest games relies both on relative efforts (as Tullock’s proposal) and on absolute effort differences (as difference-form contests). An additional desirable feature is that the serial contest is homogeneous of degree zero in contestants’ efforts. The family is characterized by a parameter representing how sensitive the outcome is to contestants’ efforts. It encompasses as polar cases the (fair) lottery and the (deterministic) all-pay auction. Equilibria have a close relationship to those of the (deterministic) all-pay auction and important properties of the latter hold for the serial contest, too.


Rent-seeking (Non-)deterministic contest Contest success function All-pay auction Rent dissipation Exclusion principle Preemption effect Cap Campaign contributions 

JEL Classification

C72 D72 D44 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.IUDESP and Departament de Fonaments de l’Anàlisi EconòmicaUniversity of AlicanteAlicanteSpain
  2. 2.Departamento de EconomíaUniversitat Rovira i VirgiliReus (Tarragona)Spain

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