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Testing static game theory with dynamic experiments: A case study of public goods

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  • Botelho, Anabela
  • Harrison, Glenn W.
  • Pinto, Lígia M. Costa
  • Rutström, Elisabet E.

Abstract

Game theory provides predictions of behavior in many one-shot games. On the other hand, most experimenters usually play repeated games with subjects, to provide experience. To avoid subjects rationally employing strategies that are appropriate for the repeated game, experimenters typically employ a "random strangers" design in which subjects are randomly paired with others in the session. There is some chance that subjects will meet in multiple rounds, but it is claimed that this chance is so small that subjects will behave as if they are in a one-shot environment. We present evidence from public goods experiments that this claim is not always true.

Suggested Citation

  • Botelho, Anabela & Harrison, Glenn W. & Pinto, Lígia M. Costa & Rutström, Elisabet E., 2009. "Testing static game theory with dynamic experiments: A case study of public goods," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 253-265.3, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:67:y:2009:i:1:p:253-265.e3
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Game theory Experiments Public goods;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods

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