Delegating Performance Evaluation

Igor Letina, Shuo Liu, Nick Netzer
2017 Social Science Research Network  
We study optimal incentive contracts with multiple agents when performance is evaluated by a reviewer. The reviewer may be biased in favor of the agents, but the degree of bias is unknown to the principal. We show that a contest, which is a contract in which the principal fixes a set of prizes to be allocated to the agents, is optimal. By using a contest, the principal can commit to sustaining incentives despite the reviewer's potential leniency bias. The optimal effort profile can be uniquely
more » ... le can be uniquely implemented by an all-pay auction with a cap. Our analysis has implications for various applications, such as the design of worker compensation or the allocation of research grants.
doi:10.2139/ssrn.3059593 fatcat:2wy5hkzhyzbtbbhwoxvp6tf5zm