Values of Large Games, IV

Evaluating the Electoral College by Montecarlo Techniques

by Irwin Mann, Lloyd S. Shapley


Full Document

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 1.4 MB

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 10 or higher for the best experience.


Purchase Print Copy

 FormatList Price Price
Add to Cart Paperback44 pages $23.00 $18.40 20% Web Discount

An illustration of the power-index concept of game theory, provided by an analysis of the Electoral College of the United States as a game. Despite its seemingly transparent rules of operation, the electoral-vote method of choosing the president and vice-president contains a number of peculiarities in its a priority distribution of power that can only be revealed by laborious numerical computations. The most noteworthy power anomaly disclosed is a general bias in favor of the large states that makes their electoral votes consistently worth more than those of the small states, although the difference is relatively minor. The study contains an account of the game model, the computed power indices, and the "Montecarlo" sampling schemes invented to make the computation possible.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Research memorandum series. The Research Memorandum was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 1973 that represented working papers meant to report current results of RAND research to appropriate audiences.

Permission is given to duplicate this electronic document for personal use only, as long as it is unaltered and complete. Copies may not be duplicated for commercial purposes. Unauthorized posting of RAND PDFs to a non-RAND Web site is prohibited. RAND PDFs are protected under copyright law. For information on reprint and linking permissions, please visit the RAND Permissions page.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.