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The Coevolution of Trust and Institutions in Anonymous and Non-anonymous Communities

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  • Werner Güth

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  • Axel Ockenfels

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Abstract

We report on a research program that employs the indirect evolutionary approach to analyze how the institutional environment drives the evolution of trust and trustworthiness through the evolution of moral preferences, and how in turn the evolution of preferences shapes the evolution of the rules of the game. In particular, we describe how the ability to detect trustworthiness in non-anonymous communities supports the evolution of trust and thus crowds out legal institutions. If anonymous interaction prevents type detection, legal institutions such as courts and legal insurance may play a decisive role for the emergence of trust.

Suggested Citation

  • Werner Güth & Axel Ockenfels, 2002. "The Coevolution of Trust and Institutions in Anonymous and Non-anonymous Communities," Papers on Strategic Interaction 2002-07, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Strategic Interaction Group.
  • Handle: RePEc:esi:discus:2002-07
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    File URL: ftp://papers.econ.mpg.de/esi/discussionpapers/2002-07.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Werner Gueth & Axel Ockenfels, 2000. "Evolutionary Norm Enforcement," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 156(2), pages 335-335, June.
    2. Selten, Reinhard, 1988. "Evolutionary stability in extensive two-person games - correction and further development," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 223-266, December.
    3. G Th, Werner & Ockenfels, Axel, 2005. "The coevolution of morality and legal institutions: an indirect evolutionary approach," Journal of Institutional Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 1(02), pages 155-174, December.
    4. Brosig, Jeannette, 2002. "Identifying cooperative behavior: some experimental results in a prisoner's dilemma game," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 47(3), pages 275-290, March.
    5. Max Albert & Erich Kirchler & Werner G³th & Boris Maciejovsky, 2001. "Exploring Behavior: An Ultimatum Experiment," Homo Oeconomicus, Institute of SocioEconomics, vol. 18, pages 353-375.
    6. Ockenfels, Axel & Selten, Reinhard, 2000. "An Experiment on the Hypothesis of Involuntary Truth-Signalling in Bargaining," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 90-116, October.
    7. Selten, Reinhard, 1983. "Evolutionary stability in extensive two-person games," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 5(3), pages 269-363, September.
    8. Axel Ockenfels, 2002. "New Institutional Structures on the Internet: The Economic Design of Online Auctions," Papers on Strategic Interaction 2002-08, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Strategic Interaction Group.
    9. Michi Kandori, 2010. "Social Norms and Community Enforcement," Levine's Working Paper Archive 630, David K. Levine.
    10. Axel Ockenfels, 2002. "Reputationsmechanismen auf Internet-Marktplattformen - Theorie und Empirie -," Papers on Strategic Interaction 2002-46, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Strategic Interaction Group.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. G Th, Werner & Ockenfels, Axel, 2005. "The coevolution of morality and legal institutions: an indirect evolutionary approach," Journal of Institutional Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 1(02), pages 155-174, December.
    2. Werner Güth & Anthony ZIEGELMEYER & Loreto LLORENTE ERVITI, 2004. "Quantity Competition under Asymmetric Information without Common Priors: An Indirect Evolutionary Approach," Papers on Strategic Interaction 2003-32, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Strategic Interaction Group.
    3. Friederike Mengel & Axel Ockenfels & Werner Güth, 2006. "The Dynamics of Trust and Trustworthiness on EBay. An Evolutionary Analysis of Buyer Insurance and Seller Reputation," Papers on Strategic Interaction 2006-03, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Strategic Interaction Group.
    4. Niclas Berggren & Henrik Jordahl, 2006. "Free to Trust: Economic Freedom and Social Capital," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 59(2), pages 141-169, May.
    5. Marian Panganiban, 2015. "To friends everything, to strangers the law? An experiment on contract enforcement and group identity," Jena Economic Research Papers 2015-015, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
    6. Axel Ockenfels, 2002. "New Institutional Structures on the Internet: The Economic Design of Online Auctions," Papers on Strategic Interaction 2002-08, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Strategic Interaction Group.

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