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Social identity, group composition and public good provision: an experimental study

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  • Chakravarty, Surajeet
  • Fonseca, Miguel A.

Abstract

Social fragmentation has been identified as a potential cause for the under-provision of public goods in developing nations, as well as in urban communities in developed countries such as the U.S. We study the effect of social fragmentation on public good provision using laboratory experiments. We create two artificial social groups in the lab and we assign subjects belonging to both groups to a public good game. The treatment variable is the relative size of each social group, which is a proxy for social fragmentation. We find that while higher social fragmentation leads to lower public good provision, this effect is short-lived. Furthermore, social homogeneity does not lead to higher levels of contributions.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 23115.

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Date of creation: 07 Jun 2010
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:23115

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Keywords: Social Identity; Public Goods; Social Fragmentation; Experiments.;

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References

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  1. Ernst Fehr & Simon Gaechter, 1999. "Cooperation and Punishment in Public Goods Experiments," CESifo Working Paper Series 183, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Mueller,Dennis C., 2003. "Public Choice III," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521894753, April.
  3. Alberto Alesina & Eliana La Ferrara, 1999. "Participation in Heterogeneous Communities," NBER Working Papers 7155, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Yan Chen & Sherry Xin Li, 2009. "Group Identity and Social Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(1), pages 431-57, March.
  5. Alesina, Alberto & La Ferrara, Eliana, 2005. "Ethnic Diversity and Economic Performance," Scholarly Articles 4553005, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  6. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics And Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753, August.
  7. Erzo F. P. Luttmer, 2001. "Group Loyalty and the Taste for Redistribution," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(3), pages 500-528, June.
  8. Baqir, Reza & Easterly, William & Alesina, Alberto, 1999. "Public Goods and Ethnic Divisions," Scholarly Articles 4551797, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  9. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
  10. Eckel, Catherine C. & Grossman, Philip J., 2005. "Managing diversity by creating team identity," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 58(3), pages 371-392, November.
  11. Abhijit Banerjee & Lakshmi Iyer & Rohini Somanathan, 2005. "History, Social Divisions, and Public Goods in Rural India," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(2-3), pages 639-647, 04/05.
  12. La Ferrara, Eliana & Alesina, Alberto, 2000. "Participation in Heterogeneous Communities," Scholarly Articles 4551796, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  13. Gary Charness & Luca Rigotti & Aldo Rustichini, 2007. "Individual Behavior and Group Membership," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(4), pages 1340-1352, September.
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As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. Social diversity – the good news
    by Nicholas Gruen in Club Troppo on 2010-06-22 02:42:22
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Cited by:
  1. Ben Greiner & Werner Güth & Ro’i Zultan, 2012. "Social communication and discrimination: a video experiment," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 15(3), pages 398-417, September.
  2. Fabio Galeotti & Daniel John Zizzo, 2012. "Trust and trustworthiness with singleton groups," Working Paper series, University of East Anglia, Centre for Behavioural and Experimental Social Science (CBESS) 12-03, School of Economics, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK..

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