Laboratory Federalism: The Open Method of Coordination (OMC) as an Evolutionary Learning Process

Ana Begona Ania Martinez, Andreas Wagener

Publications: Contribution to journalArticlePeer Reviewed

Abstract

In view of the concept of laboratory federalism, the Open Method of Coordination (OMC), adopted by the EU as a mode of governance, can be interpreted as an imitative learning dynamics of the type considered in evolutionary game theory. Its iterative design and focus on good practice are captured by the behavioral rule "imitate the best." In a redistribution game with utilitarian governments and mobile welfare recipients, we compare the outcomes of imitative behavior (long-run evolutionary equilibria) and decentralized best-response behavior (Nash equilibria). The learning dynamics leads to coordination on a strict subset of Nash equilibria, favoring policy choices that can be sustained by a simple majority of Member States.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)767-795
Number of pages29
JournalJournal of Public Economic Theory
Volume16
Issue number5
Early online date10 Oct 2013
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2014

Austrian Fields of Science 2012

  • 502021 Microeconomics

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