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The impact of anticipated discussion on cooperation in a social dilemma

Listed author(s):
  • Tjøtta, Sigve


    (University of Bergen, Department of Economics)

  • Torsvik, Gaute


    (University of Bergen, Department of Economics)

  • Kobbeltvedt, Therese


    (Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration, Department of Strategy and Management)

  • Molander, Anders


    (Center for the Study of Professions, Oslo University College)

We study the impact of anticipated face-to-face discussions among group members after they have made an anonymous contribution to a public good in an experimental setting. We find that the impact of anticipated discussions depends on how we frame the public good game. When framed in non-evaluative language, anticipated ex post discussions lead to a sharp reduction in contributions to the public good. This effect reversed when evaluative language was used to underscore normative expectations. In contrast, there was no framing in the no-discussion baseline version of our game. We offer an explanation that centres on the idea that the announcement of ex post discussions reinforces both normative and predictive expectations.

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Paper provided by University of Bergen, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers in Economics with number 11/08.

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Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: 23 Aug 2008
Handle: RePEc:hhs:bergec:2008_011
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Institutt for økonomi, Universitetet i Bergen, Postboks 7802, 5020 Bergen, Norway

Phone: (+47)55589200
Fax: (+47)55589210
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  1. Gachter, Simon & Fehr, Ernst, 1999. "Collective action as a social exchange," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 39(4), pages 341-369, July.
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