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Black Sheep and Walls of Silence

  • Gerd Muehlheusser
  • Andreas Roider

In this paper we analyze the frequently observed phenomenon that (i) some members of a team (“black sheep”) exhibit behavior disliked by other (honest) team members, who (ii) nevertheless refrain from reporting such misbehavior to the authorities (they set up a “wall of silence”). Much cited examples include hospitals and police departments. In this paper, these features arise in equilibrium. An important ingredient of our model are benefits that agents receive when cooperating with each other in a team. Our results suggest that teams in which the importance of these benefits varies across team members are especially prone to the above mentioned phenomenon.

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Paper provided by University of Bonn, Germany in its series Bonn Econ Discussion Papers with number bgse17_2005.

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Length: 37
Date of creation: Jul 2004
Date of revision: Jun 2005
Handle: RePEc:bon:bonedp:bgse17_2005
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Bonn Graduate School of Economics, University of Bonn, Adenauerallee 24 - 26, 53113 Bonn, Germany

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Web page: http://www.bgse.uni-bonn.de

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  1. Motta, Massimo & Polo, Michele, 2000. "Leniency Programs and Cartel Prosecution," CEPR Discussion Papers 2349, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  7. John Knowles & Nicola Persico & Petra Todd, . "Racial Bias in Motor Vehicle Searches: Theory and Evidence," Penn CARESS Working Papers 5940d5c4875c571776fb29700, Penn Economics Department.
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  11. Jeong-Yoo Kim & Keunkwan Ryu, 2003. "Yes-Men and No-Men: Does Defiance Signal Talent?," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 159(3), pages 468-, September.
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  19. repec:rus:hseeco:71401 is not listed on IDEAS
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