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Information Disclosure and Voluntary Contributions to Public Goods


  • Siew Hong Teoh


This article analyzes the effect of information generation and disclosure upon free-riding and on the likelihood that cooperative efforts collapse in a public-goods game. In this model, the prospect of greater disclosure can make all individuals worse off ex ante by reducing expected contributions to the public good. The model provides conditions under which disclosure becomes either more or less desirable as a function of the number of individual contributors. Regulation or competitive problems that increase direct costs of disclosure may on average increase the provision of public goods and improve welfare. The desirability of disclosure in the contexts of collective political action, debt renegotiation, and production in teams are discussed.

Suggested Citation

  • Siew Hong Teoh, 1997. "Information Disclosure and Voluntary Contributions to Public Goods," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 28(3), pages 385-406, Autumn.
  • Handle: RePEc:rje:randje:v:28:y:1997:i:autumn:p:385-406

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Raphael Boleslavsky & Bruce Carlin & Christopher Cotton, 2017. "Competing for Capital: Auditing and Credibility in Financial Reporting," Working Papers 1377, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
    2. Andrew Kleit, 2001. "Creating a Public Good to Fight Monopolization: The Formation of Broadcast Music, Inc," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 19(2), pages 243-256, September.
    3. Kfir Eliaz & Roberto Serrano, 2014. "Sending information to interactive receivers playing a generalized prisoners’ dilemma," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer;Game Theory Society, vol. 43(2), pages 245-267, May.
    4. Subrahmanyam, Avanidhar & Titman, Sheridan, 1998. "Feedback from Stock Prices to Cash Flows†(formerly called “Real Effects of Financial Market Trading)," University of California at Los Angeles, Anderson Graduate School of Management qt2hw9m972, Anderson Graduate School of Management, UCLA.
    5. Andres Almazan & Javier Suarez & Sheridan Titman, 2003. "Stakeholder, Transparency and Capital Structure," NBER Working Papers 10101, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Henry Cao & David Hirshleifer, 2004. "Taking the Road Less Traveled: Does Conversation Eradicate Pernicious Cascades?," Game Theory and Information 0412001, EconWPA.
    7. Johannes Spinnewijn & Florian Ederer & Arthur Campbell, 2011. "Information Search and Revelation in Groups," 2011 Meeting Papers 997, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    8. Daniel, Kent & Hirshleifer, David & Teoh, Siew Hong, 2002. "Investor psychology in capital markets: evidence and policy implications," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 139-209, January.
    9. Mehmet Bac & Parimal Kanti Bag, 2000. "Strategic Information Revelation in Fund-Raising Campaigns," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 0178, Econometric Society.
    10. Verrecchia, Robert E., 2001. "Essays on disclosure," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1-3), pages 97-180, December.
    11. Jorge Ponce, 2010. "Intercambio de información en mercados de crédito: una revisión de la literatura," Documentos de trabajo 2010006, Banco Central del Uruguay.
    12. repec:eee:jfinec:v:126:y:2017:i:3:p:614-634 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin, 2002. "Social Value of Public Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1521-1534, December.
    14. Ui, Takashi & Yoshizawa, Yasunori, 2015. "Characterizing social value of information," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 158(PB), pages 507-535.

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