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When and Why? A Critical Survey on Coordination Failure in the Laboratory

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  • Giovanna Devetag

    ()

  • Andreas Ortmann

    ()

Abstract

Coordination games with Pareto-ranked equilibria have attracted major theoretical attention over the past two decades. Two early path-breaking sets of experimental studies were widely interpreted as suggesting that coordination failure is a common phenomenon in the laboratory. We identify the major determinants that seem to affect the incidence, and/or emergence, of coordination failure in the lab and review critically the existing experimental studies on coordination games with Pareto-ranked equilibria since that early evidence emerged. We conclude that there are many ways to engineer coordination successes.

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Paper provided by Cognitive and Experimental Economics Laboratory, Department of Economics, University of Trento, Italia in its series CEEL Working Papers with number 0605.

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Date of creation: 2006
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Handle: RePEc:trn:utwpce:0605

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Keywords: coordination games; Pareto-ranked equilibria; payoff-asymmetric equilibria; staghunt games; optimization incentives; robustness; coordination; coordination failure;

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