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An Experimental Analysis Of Conditional Cooperation

  • Rachel Croson

    ()

    (University of Pennsylvania)

  • Enrique Fatas

    ()

    (Universitat de València)

  • Tibor Neugebauer

    ()

    (University Hannover)

Experimental and empirical evidence identifies the existence of socialpreferences and proposes competing models of such preferences. In this paper, wefurther examine one such social preference: conditional cooperation. We run threeexperimental public goods games, the traditional voluntary contribution mechanism(VCM, also called the linear public goods game), the weak-link mechanism (WLM) andthe best-shot mechanism (BSM). We then analyze the existence and types ofconditional cooperation observed. We find that participants are responsive to the pastcontributions of others in all three games, but are most responsive to differentcontributions in each game: the median in the VCM, the minimum in the WLM and themaximum in the BSM. We conclude by discussing implications of these differences forbehavior in these three mechanisms. This paper thus refines our notions of conditionalcooperation to allow for different types of public good production functions and byextension, other contexts.

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Paper provided by Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie) in its series Working Papers. Serie AD with number 2006-24.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2006
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published by Ivie
Handle: RePEc:ivi:wpasad:2006-24
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