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Ecolabels: Is More Information Better?

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  • Hend Ghazzai

    () (UR MASE - Modélisation et Analyse Statistique et Economique - ESSAIT - Ecole Supérieure de la Statistique et de l'Analyse de l'Information - Université de Carthage - University of Carthage)

  • R Lahmandi-Ayed

Abstract

We study in this paper the effect of the type of information provided by an ecolabel. For this purpose, in the framework of a model of vertical differentiation, we compare the effects of a partial information label (Type I) and a complete information label (Type III) on firms' profits, industry profit, consumers' surplus, environmental damage and social welfare. A partial information label indicates that the environmental quality of a good exceeds some given threshold. The authority issuing a partial information label chooses its labeling criteria while maximizing the social welfare. A complete information label indicates the exact environmental quality chosen by firms. We prove that while a partial information label always improves the social welfare and deteriorates the green firm profit compared to a complete information label, the preferences of the brown firm, the industry, the consumers and the impact on the environment depend on the marginal cost of quality and on the environmental sensitivity to quality.

Suggested Citation

  • Hend Ghazzai & R Lahmandi-Ayed, 2018. "Ecolabels: Is More Information Better?," Working Papers hal-01877934, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:hal-01877934
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01877934
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Ben Youssef Adel & Abderrazak Chema, 2009. "Multiplicity of Eco-Labels, Competition, and the Environment," Journal of Agricultural & Food Industrial Organization, De Gruyter, vol. 7(2), pages 1-24, December.
    2. Amacher, Gregory S. & Koskela, Erkki & Ollikainen, Markku, 2004. "Environmental quality competition and eco-labeling," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 284-306, March.
    3. Rick Harbaugh & John W. Maxwell & Beatrice Roussillon, 2011. "Label Confusion: The Groucho Effect of Uncertain Standards," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 57(9), pages 1512-1527, February.
    4. Adel Ben Youssef & Rim Lahmandi-Ayed, 2008. "Eco-labelling, Competition and Environment: Endogenization of Labelling Criteria," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 41(2), pages 133-154, October.
    5. Mussa, Michael & Rosen, Sherwin, 1978. "Monopoly and product quality," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 301-317, August.
    6. Lisette Ibanez & Gilles Grolleau, 2008. "Can Ecolabeling Schemes Preserve the Environment?," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 40(2), pages 233-249, June.
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    8. Wesley Nimon & John Beghin, 2017. "Ecolabels And International Trade In The Textile And Apparel Market," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: John Christopher Beghin (ed.), Nontariff Measures and International Trade, chapter 18, pages 321-326, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
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    10. Cesare Dosi & Michele Moretto, 2001. "Is Ecolabelling a Reliable Environmental Policy Measure?," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 18(1), pages 113-127, January.
    11. Mark Bagnoli & Susan G. Watts, 2003. "Selling to Socially Responsible Consumers: Competition and The Private Provision of Public Goods," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(3), pages 419-445, September.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Ecolabel; Complete Information; Partial Information; Environmental Quality; Ver-tical Differentiation JEL Classification L11; Q58;

    JEL classification:

    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
    • Q58 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Government Policy

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