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Cooperative Behavior and the Frequency of Social Interaction

  • John Duffy
  • Jack Ochs

We report results from an experiment that examines play in an indefinitely repeated, two-player Prisoner's Dilemma game. Each experimental session involves N subjects and a sequence of indefinitely repeated games. The main treatment consists of whether agents are matched in fixed pairings or matched randomly in each indefinitely repeated game. Within the random matching treatment, we elicit player's strategies and beliefs or vary the information that players have about their opponents. Contrary to a theoretical possibility suggested by Kandori [1992. Social norms and community enforcement. Rev. Econ. Stud. 59, 63-80], a cooperative norm does not emerge in the treatments where players are matched randomly. On the other hand, in the fixed pairings treatment, the evidence suggests that a cooperative norm does emerge as players gain more experience.

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Paper provided by David K. Levine in its series Levine's Working Paper Archive with number 122247000000000060.

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Date of creation: 02 Mar 2004
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Handle: RePEc:cla:levarc:122247000000000060
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  1. Kandori, Michihiro, 1992. "Social Norms and Community Enforcement," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 59(1), pages 63-80, January.
  2. Greif, Avner, 1989. "Reputation and Coalitions in Medieval Trade: Evidence on the Maghribi Traders," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 49(04), pages 857-882, December.
  3. 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.
  4. Paul R. Milgrom & Douglass C. North & Barry R. Weingast, 1990. "The Role Of Institutions In The Revival Of Trade: The Law Merchant, Private Judges, And The Champagne Fairs," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(1), pages 1-23, 03.
  5. Fischbacher, Urs & Gachter, Simon & Fehr, Ernst, 2001. "Are people conditionally cooperative? Evidence from a public goods experiment," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 71(3), pages 397-404, June.
  6. Glen Ellison, 2010. "Cooperation in the Prisoner's Dilemma with Anonymous Random Matching," Levine's Working Paper Archive 631, David K. Levine.
  7. Holt, Charles A, 1985. "An Experimental Test of the Consistent-Conjectures Hypothesis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(3), pages 314-25, June.
  8. Andreoni, James A & Miller, John H, 1993. "Rational Cooperation in the Finitely Repeated Prisoner's Dilemma: Experimental Evidence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 103(418), pages 570-85, May.
  9. Masaki Aoyagi & Guillaume R. Frechette, 2004. "Collusion in Repeated Games with Imperfect Public Monitoring," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000000127, UCLA Department of Economics.
  10. Pedro Dal B�, 2005. "Cooperation under the Shadow of the Future: Experimental Evidence from Infinitely Repeated Games," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(5), pages 1591-1604, December.
  11. Camerer, Colin & Weigelt, Keith, 1988. "Experimental Tests of a Sequential Equilibrium Reputation Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(1), pages 1-36, January.
  12. Nick Feltovich, 2003. "Nonparametric Tests of Differences in Medians: Comparison of the Wilcoxon–Mann–Whitney and Robust Rank-Order Tests," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 6(3), pages 273-297, November.
  13. Selten, Reinhard & Stoecker, Rolf, 1986. "End behavior in sequences of finite Prisoner's Dilemma supergames A learning theory approach," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 47-70, March.
  14. Gary E. Bolton & Elena Katok & Axel Ockenfels, 2004. "How Effective Are Electronic Reputation Mechanisms? An Experimental Investigation," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 50(11), pages 1587-1602, November.
  15. Bolton, Gary E. & Katok, Elena & Ockenfels, Axel, 2005. "Cooperation among strangers with limited information about reputation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(8), pages 1457-1468, August.
  16. Palfrey, Thomas R & Rosenthal, Howard, 1994. "Repeated Play, Cooperation and Coordination: An Experimental Study," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 545-65, July.
  17. Aoyagi, Masaki & Fréchette, Guillaume, 2009. "Collusion as public monitoring becomes noisy: Experimental evidence," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(3), pages 1135-1165, May.
  18. Merrill M. Flood, 1958. "Some Experimental Games," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 5(1), pages 5-26, October.
  19. Charalambos D Aliprantis & Gabriele Camera & Daniela Puzzello, 2007. "Contagion Equilibria in a Monetary Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 75(1), pages 277-282, 01.
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