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Policymakers' Horizon and the Sustainability of International Cooperation

Paola Conconi () and Nicolas Sahuguet ()

ULB Institutional Repository from ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles

Abstract: This paper examines the impact of policymakers' horizon on the sustainability of international cooperation. We describe a prisoners' dilemma game between two infinitely-lived countries run by policymakers. We show that re-election incentives can act as a discipline device, making it easier to sustain cooperation between policymakers with finite but potentially renewable mandates than between infinitely-lived policymakers. We also show that, when voting suffers from a recency bias, policymakers may have incentives to "collude" to get re-elected and term limits may help international cooperation.

Date: 2009
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Published in: Journal of public economics (2009) v.93,p.549-558

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