Voting Agendas and Preferences on Trees: Theory and Practice

Andreas Kleiner*, Benny Moldovanu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


We study how parliaments and committees select one out of several alternatives when options cannot be ordered along a “left-right” axis. Which voting agendas are used in practice, and how should they be designed? We assume that preferences are single peaked on a tree and study convex agendas where, at each stage in the voting process, the tree of remaining alternatives is divided into two subtrees that are subjected to a Yes-No vote. We show that strategic voting coincides with sincere, unsophisticated voting. Based on inference results and revealed preference arguments, we illustrate the empirical implications for two case studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)583-615
Number of pages33
JournalAmerican Economic Journal: Microeconomics
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2022
Externally publishedYes


FundersFunder number
Econtribute Cluster of ExcellenceCRC TR-224
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft
Hausdorff Center for Mathematics


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