Persuasion as a contest
journal contributionposted on 2012-10-01, 00:00 authored by S Skaperdas, Samarth VaidyaSamarth Vaidya
We examine how the probability of persuading an audience depends on resources expended by contending parties as well as on other factors. We use a Bayesian approach whereby the audience makes inferences solely based on the evidence produced by the contestants. We find conditions that yield the well-known additive contest success function, including the logit function. We also find conditions that produce a generalized “difference” functional form. In all cases, there are three main determinants of audience choice: (i) the truth and other objective parameters of the environment; (ii) the biases of the audience, and (iii) the resources expended by the interested parties.