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The limits of self-governance when cooperators get punished: Experimental evidence from urban and rural Russia

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  • Simon Gaechter

    ()
    (University of Nottingham)

  • Benedikt Herrmann

    ()
    (University of Nottingham)

Abstract

We report evidence from public goods experiments with and without punishment which we conducted in Russia with 566 urban and rural participants of young and mature age cohorts. Russia is interesting for studying voluntary cooperation because of its long history of collectivism, and a huge urban-rural gap. In contrast to previous experiments we find no cooperation-enhancing effect of punishment. An important reason is that there is punishment of contributors in all four subject pools. Thus, punishment can also undermine the scope for self-governance in the sense of high levels of voluntary cooperation that are sustained by sanctioning free riders only.

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Paper provided by The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham in its series Discussion Papers with number 2010-05.

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Date of creation: Apr 2010
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Handle: RePEc:cdx:dpaper:2010-05

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Keywords: social norms; free riding; misdirected punishment; experiments;

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Tore Ellingsen & Benedikt Herrmann & Martin A. Nowak & David G. Rand & Corina E. Tarnita, 2012. "Civic Capital in Two Cultures: The Nature of Cooperation in Romania and USA," CESifo Working Paper Series 4042, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Daniela Grieco & Marco Faillo & Luca Zarri, 2013. "Top Contributors as Punishers," Working Papers 24/2013, University of Verona, Department of Economics.
  3. Gioia de Melo Sella, 2012. "The perils of peer punishment: Evidence from a common pool resource framed field experiment," Working Papers 201238, Latin American and Caribbean Environmental Economics Program, revised 2012.
  4. Akay, Alpaslan & Karabulut, Gökhan & Martinsson, Peter, 2011. "The Effect of Religion on Cooperation and Altruistic Punishment: Experimental Evidence from Public Goods Experiments," IZA Discussion Papers 6179, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Goeschl, Timo & Jarke, Johannes, 2013. "Non-Strategic Punishment when Monitoring is Costly: Experimental Evidence on Differences between Second and Third Party Behavior," Working Papers 0545, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics.
  6. Mieke Meurs, 2013. "What Makes a Farmer? The Limited Expansion of Commercial Farming Among Bulgarian Smallholders," Working Papers 2013-08, American University, Department of Economics.
  7. Marco Faillo & Daniela Grieco & Luca Zarri, 2012. "Cultural Diversity, Cooperation, and Antisocial Punishment," Working Papers 09/2012, University of Verona, Department of Economics.
  8. Ulrik H. Nielsen, 2014. "Parents' Education and their Adult Offspring's Other-Regarding Behavour," Discussion Papers 14-03, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  9. Uri Gneezy & Andreas Leibbrandt & John A. List, 2014. "Ode to the sea: Workplace Organizations and Norms of Cooperation," NBER Working Papers 20234, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Daniele Nosenzo & Martin Sefton, 2012. "Promoting Cooperation: the Distribution of Reward and Punishment Power," Discussion Papers 2012-08, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
  11. Ruffle, Bradley J. & Tobol, Yossef, 2014. "Honest on Mondays: Honesty and the temporal separation between decisions and payoffs," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 65(C), pages 126-135.
  12. Faillo, Marco & Grieco, Daniela & Zarri, Luca, 2013. "Legitimate punishment, feedback, and the enforcement of cooperation," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 271-283.
  13. Ananish Chaudhuri, 2011. "Sustaining cooperation in laboratory public goods experiments: a selective survey of the literature," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 14(1), pages 47-83, March.
  14. Thöni, Christian, 2011. "Inequality Aversion and Antisocial Punishment," Economics Working Paper Series 1111, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science.
  15. Dickinson, David & Masclet, David & Villeval, Marie Claire, 2014. "Norm Enforcement in Social Dilemmas: An Experiment with Police Commissioners," IZA Discussion Papers 8218, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  16. David Dickinson & David Masclet & Marie Claire Villeval, 2014. "Norm Enforcement in Social Dilemmas. An Experiment with Police Commissioners," Working Papers halshs-00996511, HAL.
  17. Uwe Dulleck & Jonas Fooken & Yumei He, 2012. "Public Policy and Individual Labor Market Discrimination: An Artefactual Field Experiment in China," QuBE Working Papers 002, QUT Business School.
  18. David L. Dickinson & Daivd Masclet & Marie Claire Villeval, 2014. "Norm Enforcement in Social Dilemmas: An Experiment with Police Commissioners," Working Papers 14-02, Department of Economics, Appalachian State University.
  19. Christian Thöni, 2014. "Inequality aversion and antisocial punishment," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 76(4), pages 529-545, April.
  20. Angelo Antoci & Luca Zarri, 2011. "Punish and Perish?," Working Papers 2011.64, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.

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