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Endogenous Monitoring through Gossiping in an Infinitely Repeated Prisoner’s Dilemma Game: Experimental Evidence

Author

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  • Kenju Kamei

    (Durham University Business School)

  • Artem Nesterov

    (Durham University Business School)

Abstract

Exogenously given reputational information is known to improve cooperation. This paper experimentally studies how people create such information through reporting of partner’s action choices, and whether the endogenous monitoring helps sustain cooperation, in an indefinitely repeated prisoner’s dilemma game. The experiment results show that most subjects report their opponents’ action choices, thereby successfully cooperating with each other, when reporting does not involve a cost. However, subjects are strongly discouraged from reporting when doing so is costly. As a result, they fail to achieve strong cooperation norms when the reported information is privately conveyed only to their next-round interaction partner. Costly reporting occurs only occasionally, even when there is a public record whereby all future partners can check the reported information. However, groups can then foster cooperation norms aided by the public record, because reported information gets gradually accumulated and becomes more informative over time. These findings suggest that the efficacy of endogenous monitoring depends on the quality of platforms that store reported information.

Suggested Citation

  • Kenju Kamei & Artem Nesterov, 2020. "Endogenous Monitoring through Gossiping in an Infinitely Repeated Prisoner’s Dilemma Game: Experimental Evidence," Working Papers 2020_02, Department of Economics, University of Durham.
  • Handle: RePEc:dur:durham:2020_02
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Kamei, Kenju & Kobayashi, Hajime & Tse, Tiffany Tsz Kwan, 2022. "Observability of partners’ past play and cooperation: Experimental evidence," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 210(C).
    2. Yvan I. Russell & Yana Stoilova & Aura-Adriana Dosoftei, 2020. "Cooperation through Image Scoring: A Replication," Games, MDPI, vol. 11(4), pages 1-15, November.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    experiment; cooperation; prisoner’s dilemma game; reputation; reporting; infinitely repeated game.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • C73 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Stochastic and Dynamic Games; Evolutionary Games
    • D70 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - General
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods

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