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Framing effects in public goods: Prospect Theory and experimental evidence

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  • Iturbe-Ormaetxe, Iñigo
  • Ponti, Giovanni
  • Tomás, Josefa
  • Ubeda, Luis

Abstract

This paper studies, both theoretically and experimentally, framing effects in the context of a public good game in which players have to make a costly contribution either (i) to achieve or (ii) not to lose a non-excludable monetary prize. Our protocol leads to public good provision (not deterioration) only if a certain contribution level is achieved. Since both frames differ with respect to the reference point, we apply Prospect Theory to derive testable predictions. In particular, Prospect Theory predicts--and our experimental evidence confirms--greater contribution in the "loss" ("gain") frame when the contribution threshold is high (low). We also estimate the parameters which better suit our experimental evidence and partly confirm previous results in the literature.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Games and Economic Behavior.

Volume (Year): 72 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Pages: 439-447

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Handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:72:y:2011:i:2:p:439-447

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622836

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Keywords: Public good provision Framing Prospect Theory;

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References

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  1. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-91, March.
  2. Fischbacher, Urs & Gachter, Simon & Fehr, Ernst, 2001. "Are people conditionally cooperative? Evidence from a public goods experiment," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 71(3), pages 397-404, June.
  3. Kobberling, Veronika & Wakker, Peter P., 2005. "An index of loss aversion," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 122(1), pages 119-131, May.
  4. Martin Dufwenberg & Simon Gaechter & Heike Hennig-Schmidt, 2006. "The Framing of Games and the Psychology of Strategic Choice," Discussion Papers 2006-20, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
  5. Jacob K. Goeree & Charles A. Holt & Thomas R. Palfrey, 2000. "Quantal Response Equilibrium and Overbidding in Private-Value Auctions," Virginia Economics Online Papers 345, University of Virginia, Department of Economics.
  6. Goeree, Jacob K. & Holt, Charles A. & Palfrey, Thomas R., 2003. "Risk averse behavior in generalized matching pennies games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 97-113, October.
  7. Glenn Harrison & E. Rutström, 2009. "Expected utility theory and prospect theory: one wedding and a decent funeral," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 12(2), pages 133-158, June.
  8. Yaw Nyarko & Andrew Schotter, 2002. "An Experimental Study of Belief Learning Using Elicited Beliefs," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(3), pages 971-1005, May.
  9. Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1992. " Advances in Prospect Theory: Cumulative Representation of Uncertainty," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 5(4), pages 297-323, October.
  10. Sonnemans, Joep & Schram, Arthur & Offerman, Theo, 1998. "Public good provision and public bad prevention: The effect of framing," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 143-161, January.
  11. Thaler, Richard, 1980. "Toward a positive theory of consumer choice," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 39-60, March.
  12. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
  13. Olivier Armantier & Nicolas Treich, 2009. "Subjective Probabilities In Games: An Application To The Overbidding Puzzle," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 50(4), pages 1079-1102, November.
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Cited by:
  1. Lídia Farré & Libertad González Luna & Francesc Ortega, 2009. "Immigration, family responsibilities and the labor supply of skilled native women," Economics Working Papers 1161, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  2. Francisco Martínez-Sánchez, 2009. "Collusion, competition and piracy," Working Papers. Serie AD 2009-20, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
  3. Fosgaard, Toke & Hansen , Lars Gårn & Wengström, Erik, 2013. "Understanding the Nature of Cooperation Variability," Working Papers 2013:6, Lund University, Department of Economics.
  4. Iñigo Iturbe-Ormaetxe Kortajarene & Marisa Hidalgo, 2009. "Should we transfer resources from college to basic education?," Working Papers. Serie AD 2009-18, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
  5. Marie-Laure Cabon-Dhersin & Nathalie Etchart-Vincent, 2011. "Cooperation: the power of a single word? Some experimental evidence on wording and gender effects in a Game of Chicken," Working Papers hal-00741973, HAL.

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