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The problem of maintaining compliance within stable coalitions: experimental evidence

Author

Listed:
  • David M. McEvoy
  • James J. Murphy
  • John M. Spraggon
  • John K. Stranlund

Abstract

This study examines the performance of stable cooperative coalitions that form to provide a public good when coalition members have the opportunity to violate their commitments. A stable coalition is one in which no member wishes to leave and no non-member wishes to join. To counteract the incentive to violate their commitments, coalition members fund a third-party enforcer. This leads to the theoretical conclusion that stable coalitions are larger, and provide more of a public good, when their members are responsible for financing enforcement. However, our experiments reveal that member-financed enforcement of compliance reduces the provision of the public good. The decrease is attributed to an increase in the participation threshold for a stable coalition to form and to significant levels of noncompliance. Provision of the public good increases significantly when we abandon the strict stability conditions and require all subjects to join a coalition for it to form. Copyright 2011 Oxford University Press 2010 All rights reserved, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • David M. McEvoy & James J. Murphy & John M. Spraggon & John K. Stranlund, 2011. "The problem of maintaining compliance within stable coalitions: experimental evidence," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 63(3), pages 475-498, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:oxecpp:v:63:y:2011:i:3:p:475-498
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Astrid Dannenberg & Andreas Lange & Bodo Sturm, 2010. "On the Formation of Coalitions to Provide Public Goods - Experimental Evidence from the Lab," NBER Working Papers 15967, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. David M. McEvoy & John K. Stranlund, 2016. "Inequality Aversion and Coalition Formation," Working Papers 16-09, Department of Economics, Appalachian State University.
    3. McEvoy, David & Jones, Michael & McKee, Michael & Talberth, John, 2014. "Incentivizing cooperative agreements for sustainable forest management," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 34-41.
    4. Leo Wangler & Juan-Carlos Altamirano-Cabrera & Hans-Peter Weikard, 2013. "The political economy of international environmental agreements: a survey," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 13(3), pages 387-403, September.
    5. David McEvoy & Todd Cherry & John Stranlund, 2015. "Endogenous Minimum Participation in International Environmental Agreements: An Experimental Analysis," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 62(4), pages 729-744, December.
    6. Todd Cherry & David McEvoy, 2013. "Enforcing Compliance with Environmental Agreements in the Absence of Strong Institutions: An Experimental Analysis," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 54(1), pages 63-77, January.
    7. Federica Alberti & Edward J. Cartwright, 2016. "Full agreement and the provision of threshold public goods," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 166(1), pages 205-233, January.
    8. David M. McEvoy & Todd Cherry & John K. Stranlund, 2011. "The Endogenous Formation of Coalitions to Provide Public Goods: Theory and Experimental Evidence," Working Papers 11-01, Department of Economics, Appalachian State University.
    9. David McEvoy & Michael Jones & Michael McKee & John Talberth, 2013. "Incentivizing Cooperative Agreements for Sustainable Forest Management: Experimental Tests of Alternative Structures and Institutional Rules," Working Papers 13-23, Department of Economics, Appalachian State University.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods
    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior

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