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Voting on Punishment Systems within a Heterogeneous Group

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  • Charles Noussair
  • Fangfang Tan

Abstract

We consider a voluntary contributions game, in which players may punish others after contributions are made and observed. The productivity of contributions, as captured in the marginal-per-capita return, differs among individuals, so that there are two types: high and low productivity. Every two or eight periods, depending on the treatment, individuals vote on a punishment regime, in which certain individuals are permitted, but not required, to have punishment directed toward them. The punishment system can condition on type and contribution history. The results indicate that the most effective regime, in terms of contributions and earnings, is one that allows punishment of low contributors only, regardless of productivity. Nevertheless, only a minority of sessions converge to this system, indicating a tendency for the voting process to lead to suboptimal institutional choice.

Suggested Citation

  • Charles Noussair & Fangfang Tan, 2009. "Voting on Punishment Systems within a Heterogeneous Group," CESifo Working Paper Series 2763, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2763
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    Cited by:

    1. Esther Blanco & Maria Claudia Lopez & James M. Walker, 2016. "The Opportunity Costs of Conservation with Deterministic and Probabilistic Degradation Externalities," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 64(2), pages 255-273, June.
    2. Fangfang Tan & Erte Xiao, 2014. "Third-Party Punishment: Retribution or Deterrence?," Working Papers tax-mpg-rps-2014-05, Max Planck Institute for Tax Law and Public Finance.
    3. Reuben, Ernesto & Riedl, Arno, 2013. "Enforcement of contribution norms in public good games with heterogeneous populations," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 122-137.
    4. Konow, James & Saijo, Tatsuyoshi & Akai, Kenju, 2016. "Equity versus Equality," MPRA Paper 75376, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. repec:eee:jeborg:v:138:y:2017:i:c:p:99-110 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. repec:eee:eecrev:v:100:y:2017:i:c:p:143-156 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Michalis Drouvelis & Julian C. Jamison, 2015. "Selecting public goods institutions: Who likes to punish and reward?," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 82(2), pages 501-534, October.
    8. Kerri Brick & Martine Visser & Zoe Hoven, 2016. "Cooperation and Climate Change: Can Communication Facilitate the Provision of Public Goods in Heterogeneous Settings?," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 64(3), pages 421-443, July.
    9. Elena Molis & Levent Neyse & Raul Peña-Fernandez, 2016. "Heterogeneous Returns and Group Formations in the Public Goods Game," ThE Papers 16/02, Department of Economic Theory and Economic History of the University of Granada..
    10. Gangadharan, Lata & Nikiforakis, Nikos & Villeval, Marie Claire, 2015. "Equality Concerns and the Limits of Self-Governance in Heterogeneous Populations," IZA Discussion Papers 9384, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    11. Kölle, Felix, 2015. "Heterogeneity and cooperation: The role of capability and valuation on public goods provision," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 109(C), pages 120-134.
    12. Dekel, Sagi & Fischer, Sven & Zultan, Ro’i, 2017. "Potential Pareto Public Goods," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 146(C), pages 87-96.
    13. Kerri Brick & Martine Visser, 2012. "Heterogeneity and Voting: A Framed Public Good Experiment," Working Papers 298, Economic Research Southern Africa.
    14. Felix Koelle, 2012. "Heterogeneity and Cooperation in Privileged Groups: The Role of Capability and Valuation on Public Goods Provision," Cologne Graduate School Working Paper Series 03-08, Cologne Graduate School in Management, Economics and Social Sciences.
    15. Ramalingam, Abhijit & Rojo Arjona, David & Schram, Arthur & Van Leeuwen, Boris, 2015. "Authority and Centrality: Power and Cooperation in Social Dilemma Networks," IAST Working Papers 15-23, Institute for Advanced Study in Toulouse (IAST).
    16. Sebastian Prediger, 2011. "How does income inequality affect cooperation and punishment in public good settings?," MAGKS Papers on Economics 201138, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
    17. Gangadharan, Lata & Nikiforakis, Nikos & Villeval, Marie Claire, 2017. "Normative conflict and the limits of self-governance in heterogeneous populations," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 143-156.
    18. Nikiforakis, Nikos & Noussair, Charles N. & Wilkening, Tom, 2012. "Normative conflict and feuds: The limits of self-enforcement," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(9-10), pages 797-807.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    voting; punishment; voluntary contributions; heterogeneity; experiment;

    JEL classification:

    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods

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