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Coordination, Common Knowledge and an H1N1 Outbreak


  • Jim Engle-Warnick
  • Sonia Laszlo
  • Natalia Mishagina
  • Erin Strumpf


We experimentally measure the ability of subjects to coordinate on issues related to the H1N1 inuenza virus before and after an outbreak. Our instrument consists of an H1N1 survey converted into a coordination game. We show that the degree of coordination on beliefs about (1) H1N1 prevention, (2) H1N1 vaccine side effects, and (3) actions to take if sick all increase after the outbreak. More generally we provide the first test of coordination on meaningful strategy labels in response to a naturally occurring field coordination device. Our results provide a unique insight into the responses of beliefs to a major health event. Nous mesurons de façon expérimentale l'aptitude de sujets à coordonner sur des questions portant sur la grippe H1N1 avant et après une éruption majeure du virus. Notre instrument consiste en une enquête H1N1 convertie en jeu de coordination. Nous montrons une augmentation, suite à l'éruption, du degré de coordination dans les croyances portant sur (1) la prévention du H1N1, (2) les effets secondaires du vaccin H1N1 et (3) les actions à prendre en cas de maladie. De façon plus générale, notre étude est la première à présenter un test de coordination sur des étiquettes stratégiques en réaction à un système de coordination présent naturellement. Nos résultats permettent de mieux comprendre les croyances en réponse à un choc majeur à la santé.

Suggested Citation

  • Jim Engle-Warnick & Sonia Laszlo & Natalia Mishagina & Erin Strumpf, 2013. "Coordination, Common Knowledge and an H1N1 Outbreak," CIRANO Working Papers 2013s-10, CIRANO.
  • Handle: RePEc:cir:cirwor:2013s-10

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    7. Van Huyck, John B. & Wildenthal, John M. & Battalio, Raymond C., 2002. "Tacit Cooperation, Strategic Uncertainty, and Coordination Failure: Evidence from Repeated Dominance Solvable Games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 156-175, January.
    8. Courtney J. Ward, 2010. "Influenza Immunization Campaigns: Is an Ounce of Prevention Worth a Pound of Cure?," Working Papers tecipa-396, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
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