Representative Proxy Voting

12/12/2020
by   Elliot Anshelevich, et al.
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We study a model of proxy voting where the candidates, voters, and proxies are all located on the real line, and instead of voting directly, each voter delegates its vote to the closest proxy. The goal is to find a set of proxies that is θ-representative, which entails that for any voter located anywhere on the line, its favorite candidate is within a distance θ of the favorite candidate of its closest proxy. This property guarantees a strong form of representation as the set of voters is not required to be fixed in advance, or even be finite. We show that for candidates located on a line, an optimal proxy arrangement can be computed in polynomial time. Moreover, we provide upper and lower bounds on the number of proxies required to form a θ-representative set, thus showing that a relatively small number of proxies is enough to capture the preferences of any set of voters. An additional beneficial property of a θ-representative proxy arrangement is that for strict-Condorcet voting rules, the outcome of proxy voting is similarly close to the outcome of direct voting.

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