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Social norms in repeated public good games

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  • Nese, Annamaria
  • Sbriglia, Patrizia

Abstract

The paper explores the relationship between an individual's preference for cooperation and the establishment of cooperative norms. Our aim is to provide an experimental test of the hypothesis (Fehr and Gachter, 2002) according to which the individuals' willingness to punish defectors in social dilemma games favours the establishment of a common rule of behaviour leading to increased levels of cooperation. We conduct two experiments in which individuals decide both whether to participate in a common project and the institutional rules determining how the profits of the project were to be shared among the participants in the group. Our main question is to analyse whether high contributors react to free riding behaviour by adopting punitive sanctions. We also interview our subjects in order to elicit their opinions on civic values and free riding behaviour. Our results partly contradict the initial hypothesis; however, with reference to the institutional choices, we find that individual ethics may play an important role.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Research in Economics.

Volume (Year): 63 (2009)
Issue (Month): 4 (December)
Pages: 266-281

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Handle: RePEc:eee:reecon:v:63:y:2009:i:4:p:266-281

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622941

Related research

Keywords: Public good games Experiments Voting choices;

References

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  1. Pedro Dal Bo & Andrew Foster & Louis Putterman, 2010. "Institutions and Behavior: Experimental Evidence on the Effects of Democracy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(5), pages 2205-29, December.
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    • Glaeser, Edward Ludwig & Laibson, David I. & Scheinkman, Jose A. & Soutter, Christine L., 2000. "Measuring Trust," Scholarly Articles 4481497, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  3. Herbert Gintis, 2000. "Strong Reciprocity and Human Sociality," UMASS Amherst Economics Working Papers 2000-02, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Department of Economics.
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  6. repec:att:wimass:9610 is not listed on IDEAS
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  11. Tyran, Jean-Robert, 2004. "Voting when money and morals conflict: an experimental test of expressive voting," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(7-8), pages 1645-1664, July.
  12. James Andreoni & Brian Erard & Jonathan Feinstein, 1998. "Tax Compliance," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(2), pages 818-860, June.
  13. Marco Faillo & Stefania Ottone & Lorenzo Sacconi, 2008. "Compliance by Believing: An Experimental Exploration on Social Norms and Impartial Agreements," Econometica Working Papers wp02, Econometica, revised Aug 2008.
  14. Torgler, Benno, 2003. "To evade taxes or not to evade: that is the question," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 283-302, July.
  15. Jeremy Clark, 1998. "Fairness in Public Good Provision: An Investigation of Preferences for Equality and Proportionality," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 31(3), pages 708-729, August.
  16. Martin Sefton & Robert Shupp & James M. Walker, 2006. "The Effect of Rewards and Sanctions in Provision of Public Goods," Caepr Working Papers 2006-005, Center for Applied Economics and Policy Research, Economics Department, Indiana University Bloomington, revised Aug 2006.
  17. Samuel Bowles & Herbert Gintis, 2000. "The Evolution of Strong Reciprocity," UMASS Amherst Economics Working Papers 2000-05, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Department of Economics.
  18. Anabela Botelho & Glenn W. Harrison & Lígia Pinto & Elisabet E. Rutstrom, 2005. "Social norms and social choice," NIMA Working Papers 30, Núcleo de Investigação em Microeconomia Aplicada (NIMA), Universidade do Minho.
  19. Sandmo, Agnar, 2005. "The Theory of Tax Evasion: A Retrospective View," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 58(4), pages 643-63, December.
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