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Historical Property Rights, Sociality, and the Emergence of Impersonal Exchange in Long-distance Trade

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  • Erik Kimbrough
  • Vernon Smith
  • Bart Wilson

    ()
    (Interdisciplinary Center for Economic Science, George Mason University)

Abstract

This laboratory experiment explores the extent to which impersonal exchange emerges from personal exchange with opportunities for long-distance trade. We design a three-commodity production and exchange economy in which agents in three geographically separated villages must develop multilateral exchange networks to import a third good only available abroad. For treatments, we induce two distinct institutional histories to investigate how past experience with property rights affects the evolution of specialization and exchange. We find that a history of un-enforced property rights hinders our subjects¡¯ ability to develop the requisite personal social arrangements necessary to support specialization and effectively exploit impersonal long-distance trade.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by George Mason University, Interdisciplinary Center for Economic Science in its series Working Papers with number 1003.

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Length: 42 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2006
Date of revision: Oct 2006
Handle: RePEc:gms:wpaper:1003

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Keywords: personal exchange; impersonal exchange; long-distance trade; experimental economics;

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References

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Cited by:
  1. Fonseca, Miguel A. & Normann, Hans-Theo, 2012. "Explicit vs. tacit collusion: The impact of communication in oligopoly experiments," DICE Discussion Papers 65, Heinrich‐Heine‐Universität Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE).
  2. Calbay, Arman, 2006. "Property Rights and Theory of Value," MPRA Paper 25827, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 31 Jul 2009.
  3. Cason, Timothy N. & Gangadharan, Lata, 2011. "Price discovery and intermediation in linked emissions trading markets: A laboratory study," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(7), pages 1424-1433, May.
  4. Adam C. Smith & David B. Skarbek & Bart J. Wilson, 2009. "Anarchy, Groups, and Conflict: An Experiment on the Emergence of Protective Associations," Working Papers 09-03, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
  5. Kimbrough, Erik O. & Smith, Vernon L. & Wilson, Bart J., 2010. "Exchange, theft, and the social formation of property," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 74(3), pages 206-229, June.
  6. James Konow & Tatsuyoshi Saijo & Kenju Akai, 2008. "Morals and Mores? Experimental Evidence on Equity and Equality from the US and Japan," Levine's Working Paper Archive 122247000000002055, David K. Levine.
  7. Bart J. Wilson, 2008. "Contra Private Fairness," Working Papers 08-04, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
  8. Kimbrough, Erik O., 2011. "Heuristic learning and the discovery of specialization and exchange," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 491-511, April.
  9. Maroš Servátka & Steven Tucker & Radovan Vadovič, 2011. "Words Speak Louder Than Money," Working Papers in Economics 11/13, University of Canterbury, Department of Economics and Finance.
  10. David M. Bruner & John R. Boyce, 2013. "Voluntary Contributions to Property Rights," Working Papers 13-14, Department of Economics, Appalachian State University.
  11. Erik O. Kimbrough & Alexander Vostroknutov, 2013. "Norms Make Preferences Social," Discussion Papers dp13-01, Department of Economics, Simon Fraser University.
  12. Erik O. Kimbrough & Bart J. Wilson, 2012. "Insiders, outsiders, and the adaptability of informal rules to ecological shocks," Discussion Papers dp12-20, Department of Economics, Simon Fraser University.
  13. Daniel Houser & Erte Xiao, 2011. "Classification of natural language messages using a coordination game," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 14(1), pages 1-14, March.
  14. Clemens, Georg & Rau, Holger A., 2014. "Do leniency policies facilitate collusion? Experimental evidence," DICE Discussion Papers 130, Heinrich‐Heine‐Universität Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE).
  15. Taylor Jaworski & Bart J. Wilson, 2009. "Go West Young Man: Self-selection and Endogenous Property Rights," Working Papers 09-02, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
  16. Al-Ubaydli, Omar & McCabe, Kevin & Twieg, Peter, 2014. "Can more be less? An experimental test of the resource curse," MPRA Paper 55381, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  17. Jason Arentz & Frederic Sautet & Virgil Storr, 2013. "Prior-knowledge and opportunity identification," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 41(2), pages 461-478, August.
  18. Bicchieri, Cristina & Erte, Xiao, 2007. "Do the right thing: But only if others do so," MPRA Paper 4609, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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