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Funding a new bridge in rural Vietnam: a field experiment on social influence and default contributions


  • By Fredrik Carlsson
  • Olof Johansson-Stenman
  • Pham Khanh Nam


Public goods provision is essential for economic development. Yet there is limited evidence regarding contributions to local public goods in developing countries. This article analyses a field experiment where all 200 households in a village in rural Vietnam make real contributions to a public good that is very important for them in daily life—a bridge. We study the role of social influence (that people may be more willing to co-operate if others do) and the effects of the default alternative in the choice situation. We find significant and substantial (in the order of magnitude of 15–25%) effects of both social influence and defaults but only when providing low reference or default contributions.

Suggested Citation

  • By Fredrik Carlsson & Olof Johansson-Stenman & Pham Khanh Nam, 2015. "Funding a new bridge in rural Vietnam: a field experiment on social influence and default contributions," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 67(4), pages 987-1014.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:oxecpp:v:67:y:2015:i:4:p:987-1014.

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