IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Information Transparency and Coordination Failure: Theory and Experiment




We examine the effect of higher order beliefs on the ability of decentralized decision makers to coordinate and take advantage of improvements in information transparency that can increase welfare. Theories that address this question have not been empirically explored. We study coordination in a laboratory experiment with privately informed decision makers. Economic outcomes in the setting depend both on agents' rational beliefs regarding economic fundamentals and on their rational beliefs regarding the beliefs of other agents. Increasing information transparency mitigates uncertainty about economic fundamentals but may increase strategic uncertainty, precipitating multiple equilibria and less efficient group outcomes. We provide evidence that sometimes the equilibrium attained by creditors is inferior from a welfare perspective to other available equilibria. Risk dominance appears to determine equilibrium selection in our setting. Copyright University of Chicago on behalf of the Institute of Professional Accounting, 2004.

Suggested Citation

  • Regina M. Anctil & John Dickhaut & Chandra Kanodia & Brian Shapiro, 2004. "Information Transparency and Coordination Failure: Theory and Experiment," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(2), pages 159-195, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:joares:v:42:y:2004:i:2:p:159-195

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: link to full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Shyam Sunder, 2001. "Standards for Corporate Financial Reporting: Regulatory Competition Within and Across International Boundaries," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm245, Yale School of Management, revised 01 Apr 2002.
    2. S. J. Liebowitz & Stephen E. Margolis, 1994. "Network Externality: An Uncommon Tragedy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(2), pages 133-150, Spring.
    3. Sunder, Shyam, 2002. "Regulatory competition for low cost-of-capital accounting rules," Journal of Accounting and Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 147-149.
    4. Shyam NMI Sunder & Matthew A. Cronin & Robert E. Kraut & James Morris & Rahul Telang, 2002. "Markets for Attention: Will Postage for Email Help?," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm301, Yale School of Management.
    5. Shyam NMI Sunder & Ronald A. Dye, 2001. "Why Not Allow the FASB and IASB Standards to Compete in the U.S.?," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm192, Yale School of Management.
    6. Rong-Ruey Duh & Karim Jamal & Shyam NMI Sunder, 2001. "Control and Assurance in E-Commerce: Privacy, Integrity and Security at eBay," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm170, Yale School of Management.
    7. Michael L. Katz & Carl Shapiro, 1994. "Systems Competition and Network Effects," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(2), pages 93-115, Spring.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Camille Cornand & Frank Heinemann, 2014. "Measuring agents’ reaction to private and public information in games with strategic complementarities," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 17(1), pages 61-77, March.
    2. Jean-Pierre Allegret & Camille Cornand, 2006. "The pros and cons of higher transparency: the case of speculative attacks," Recherches économiques de Louvain, De Boeck Université, vol. 72(3), pages 215-246.
    3. Johne Bone & Michalis Drouvelis & Indrajit Ray, 2013. "Coordination in 2 x 2 Games by Following Recommendations from Correlated Equilibria," Discussion Papers 12-04r, Department of Economics, University of Birmingham.
    4. Anctil, Regina M. & Dickhaut, John & Johnson, Cathleen & Kanodia, Chandra, 2010. "Does information transparency decrease coordination failure?," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 70(2), pages 228-241, November.
    5. George Iatridis & Panayotis Alexakis, 2012. "Evidence of voluntary accounting disclosures in the Athens Stock Market," Review of Accounting and Finance, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 11(1), pages 73-92, February.
    6. Pingyang Gao, 2008. "Keynesian Beauty Contest, Accounting Disclosure, and Market Efficiency," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(4), pages 785-807, September.
    7. Steven J. Bosworth, 2017. "The importance of higher-order beliefs to successful coordination," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 20(1), pages 237-258, March.
    8. Hassan, Omaima A.G. & Romilly, Peter & Giorgioni, Gianluigi & Power, David, 2009. "The value relevance of disclosure: Evidence from the emerging capital market of Egypt," The International Journal of Accounting, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 79-102, March.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:joares:v:42:y:2004:i:2:p:159-195. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.