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Rich communication, social motivations, and coordinated resistance against divide-and-conquer: A laboratory investigation

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  • Cason, Timothy N.
  • Mui, Vai-Lam

Abstract

This paper presents a laboratory experiment to investigate how social motivations and free-form communication (Rich Communication) can facilitate coordinated resistance against divide-and-conquer transgressions. In our experiment, a leader first decides whether to extract surplus from a victim and shares it with a beneficiary. We find that the successful joint resistance rate increases almost four-fold (from 15 to 58%) when moving from more restrictive communication treatments to Rich Communication. We also find that the significant impacts of Rich Communication are driven more by the responders' ability to send free-form messages rather than the multiple and iterative opportunities to indicate intentions.

Suggested Citation

  • Cason, Timothy N. & Mui, Vai-Lam, 2015. "Rich communication, social motivations, and coordinated resistance against divide-and-conquer: A laboratory investigation," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 146-159.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:poleco:v:37:y:2015:i:c:p:146-159
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ejpoleco.2014.10.005
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    Cited by:

    1. Dijkstra, Peter T. & Haan, Marco A. & Mulder, Machiel, 2017. "Industry structure and collusion with uniform yardstick competition: Theory and experiments," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 1-33.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Rich Communication; Coordinated resistance; Laboratory experiment; Content analysis; Divide-and-conquer;

    JEL classification:

    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions

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