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In Broad Daylight: Full Information and Higher-order Punishment Opportunities Promote Cooperation



The expectation that non-cooperators will be punished can help to sustain cooperation, but there are competing claims about whether opportunities to engage in higher-order punishment (punishing punishment or failure to punish) help or undermine cooperation in social dilemmas. In a set of experimental treatments, we find that availability of higher-order punishment increases cooperation and efficiency when subjects have full information on the pattern of punishing, including its past history, and opportunities to punish are unrestricted. Availability of higher-order punishment reduces cooperation and efficiency if it is restricted to counter-punishing alone, if past history is unavailable, and if there is a dedicated counter-punishment stage.

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  • Kenju Kamei & Louis Putterman, 2012. "In Broad Daylight: Full Information and Higher-order Punishment Opportunities Promote Cooperation," Working Papers 2012-3, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:bro:econwp:2012-3

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Kenju Kamei & Louis Putterman & Jean-Robert Tyran, 2015. "State or nature? Endogenous formal versus informal sanctions in the voluntary provision of public goods," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 18(1), pages 38-65, March.

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    collective action; social dilemma; voluntary contribution; public goods; punishment; counter-punishment; higher-order punishment.;

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