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Communication, cooperation and collusion in team tournaments ? An experimental study

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  • Matthias Sutter

    ()

  • Christina Strassmair

    ()

Abstract

We study the effects of communication in an experimental tournament between teams. When teams, rather than individuals, compete for a prize there is a need for intra-team coordination in order to win the inter-team competition. Introducing communication in such situations may have ambiguous effects on effort choices. Communication within teams may promote higher efforts by mitigating the internal free-rider problem. Communication between competing teams may lead to collusion, thereby reducing efforts. In our experiment we control the channels of communication by letting subjects communicate through an electronic chat. We find, indeed, that communication within teams increases efforts and communication between teams reduces efforts. We use team members? dialogues to explain these effects of communication, and check the robustness of our results.

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File URL: http://eeecon.uibk.ac.at/wopec2/repec/inn/wpaper/2007-19.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck in its series Working Papers with number 2007-19.

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Length: 48
Date of creation: Aug 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:inn:wpaper:2007-19

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Related research

Keywords: Tournament; Team decision making; Communication; Collusion; Free-riding; Experiment;

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  1. Frans van Dijk & Joep Sonnemans & Frans van Winden, 1998. "Incentive Systems in a Real Effort Experiment," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 98-023/1, Tinbergen Institute.
  2. Nalbantian, Haig R & Schotter, Andrew, 1997. "Productivity under Group Incentives: An Experimental Study," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(3), pages 314-41, June.
  3. David J. Cooper & John H. Kagel, 2005. "Are Two Heads Better Than One? Team versus Individual Play in Signaling Games," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(3), pages 477-509, June.
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