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The Effect of Conflict History on Cooperation Within and Between Groups: Evidence from a Laboratory Experiment

Listed author(s):
  • Goone Beekman

    ()

    (Wageningen University, Development Economics Group, P.O. Box 8130, 6700 EW Wageningen, Netherlands)

  • Stephen Cheung

    ()

    (The University of Sydney, School of Economics, Merewether Building H04, Sydney NSW 2006, Australia)

  • Ian Levely

    ()

    (Institute of Economic Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University in Prague, Smetanovo nábreží 6, 111 01 Prague 1, Czech Republic)

We study cooperation within and between groups in the laboratory, comparing treatments in which two groups have previously been (i) in conflict with one another, (ii) in conflict with a different group, or (iii) not previously exposed to con flict. We model conflict using an inter-group Tullock contest, and measure its effects upon cooperation using a multi-level public good game. We demonstrate that con flict increases cooperation within groups, while decreasing cooperation between groups. Moreover, we find that cooperation between groups increases in response to an increase in the effciency gains from cooperation only when the two groups have not previously interacted.

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File URL: http://ies.fsv.cuni.cz/sci/publication/show/id/5329/lang/cs
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Paper provided by Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute of Economic Studies in its series Working Papers IES with number 2015/16.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2015
Date of revision: Jun 2015
Handle: RePEc:fau:wpaper:wp2015_16
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  1. Gary Charness & Matthew Rabin, 2002. "Understanding Social Preferences with Simple Tests," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(3), pages 817-869.
  2. Ernst Fehr & Klaus M. Schmidt, 1999. "A Theory of Fairness, Competition, and Cooperation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 817-868.
  3. Ke, Changxia & Konrad, Kai A. & Morath, Florian, 2013. "Brothers in arms – An experiment on the alliance puzzle," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 61-76.
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  10. Fellner, Gerlinde & Lünser, Gabriele K., 2014. "Cooperation in local and global groups," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 364-373.
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  14. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
  15. Gary Charness & Luca Rigotti & Aldo Rustichini, 2007. "Individual Behavior and Group Membership," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(4), pages 1340-1352, September.
  16. Maarten J. Voors & Eleonora E. M. Nillesen & Philip Verwimp & Erwin H. Bulte & Robert Lensink & Daan P. Van Soest, 2012. "Violent Conflict and Behavior: A Field Experiment in Burundi," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(2), pages 941-964, April.
  17. Eckel, Catherine C. & Grossman, Philip J., 2005. "Managing diversity by creating team identity," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 58(3), pages 371-392, November.
  18. Rabin, Matthew, 1993. "Incorporating Fairness into Game Theory and Economics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(5), pages 1281-1302, December.
  19. Yan Chen & Sherry Xin Li, 2009. "Group Identity and Social Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(1), pages 431-457, March.
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