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The efficiency of crackdowns: A lab-in-the-field experiment in public transportations

Author

Listed:
  • Zhixin Dai

    (GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - Université de Lyon - UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Étienne] - UCBL - Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1 - Université de Lyon - UL2 - Université Lumière - Lyon 2 - ENS Lyon - École normale supérieure - Lyon)

  • Fabio Galeotti

    () (GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - Université de Lyon - UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Étienne] - UCBL - Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1 - Université de Lyon - UL2 - Université Lumière - Lyon 2 - ENS Lyon - École normale supérieure - Lyon)

  • Marie Claire Villeval

    () (GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - Université de Lyon - UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Étienne] - UCBL - Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1 - Université de Lyon - UL2 - Université Lumière - Lyon 2 - ENS Lyon - École normale supérieure - Lyon)

Abstract

The concentration of high-frequency controls in a limited period of time (“crackdowns”) constitutes an important feature of many law-enforcement policies around the world. In this paper, we offer a comprehensive investigation on the relative efficiency and effectiveness of various crackdown policies using a lab-in-the-field experiment with real passengers of a public transport service. We introduce a novel game, the daily public transportation game, where subjects have to decide, over many periods, whether to buy or not a ticket knowing that there might be a control. Our results show that (a) concentrated crackdowns are less effective and efficient than random controls; (b) prolonged crackdowns reduce fare-dodging during the period of intense monitoring but induce a burst of fraud as soon as they are withdrawn; (c) pre-announced controls induce more fraud in the periods without control. Overall, we also observe that real fare-dodgers fraud more in the experiment than non-fare-dodgers.
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Zhixin Dai & Fabio Galeotti & Marie Claire Villeval, 2015. "The efficiency of crackdowns: A lab-in-the-field experiment in public transportations," Post-Print halshs-01183366, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:journl:halshs-01183366
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-01183366
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    1. Zhixin Dai & Fabio Galeotti & Marie Claire Villeval, 2018. "Cheating in the Lab Predicts Fraud in the Field: An Experiment in Public Transportation," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 64(3), pages 1081-1100, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Zhixin Dai & Fabio Galeotti & Marie Claire Villeval, 2018. "Cheating in the Lab Predicts Fraud in the Field: An Experiment in Public Transportation," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 64(3), pages 1081-1100, March.
    2. Benedetto Barabino & Cristian Lai & Alessandro Olivo, 2020. "Fare evasion in public transport systems: a review of the literature," Public Transport, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 27-88, March.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    experiment; transportation; monitoring; fraud; Crackdowns;

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law

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