• Jeff Ely

Optimal Feedback in Contests

Joint with George Georgiads, Sina Khorasani and Luis Rayo We derive optimal contests for environments where output takes the form of breakthroughs and the principal has an informational advantage over the contestants. Whether or not the principal is able to provide real-time feedback to contestants, the optimal prize allocation is egalitarian: all agents who have succeeded in a pre-specified time interval share the prize equally. When providing feedback is feasible, the optimal contest takes a stark cyclical form: contestants are fully apprised of their own success, and at the end of each fixed-length cycle, they are informed about peer success as well.


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Jeffrey Ely

Department of Economics

Northwestern University

2211 Campus Dr Evanston, IL 60208

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©2019 by Jeffrey Ely.