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Framing Effects in Public Goods: Prospect Theory and Experimental Evidence

  • Iñigo Iturbe Ormaetxe

    ()

    (Universidad de Alicante)

  • Giovanni Ponti

    (Universidad de Alicante)

  • Josefa Tomás

    (Universidad de Alicante)

  • Luis Ubeda

    (Universidad de Alicante)

This paper studies, both theoretically and experimentally, frame effects in the context of a public good game in which players have to make a costly contribution either i) to achieve or ii) not to lose a non excludable monetary prize. Our protocol leads to public good provision (not deterioration) only if a certain contribution level is achieved. Since both frames differ with respect to the reference point, we use Prospect Theory to derive testable predictions. In particular, Prospect Theory predicts more contribution in the second frame. Our evidence suggests that a) subjects¿ behavior is highly sensitive to frames and b) the theoretical prediction is confirmed except when the threshold is low. We also estimate the parameters which better suit our experimental evidence, partly confirming previous results in the literature.

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File URL: http://www.ivie.es/downloads/docs/wpasad/wpasad-2008-15.pdf
File Function: Fisrt version / Primera version, 2008
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Paper provided by Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie) in its series Working Papers. Serie AD with number 2008-15.

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Length: 30 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2008
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published by Ivie
Handle: RePEc:ivi:wpasad:2008-15
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  1. Goeree, Jacob K. & Holt, Charles A. & Palfrey, Thomas R., 2003. "Risk averse behavior in generalized matching pennies games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 97-113, October.
  2. Urs Fischbacher & Simon Gaechter & Ernst Fehr, . "Are People Conditionally Cooperative? Evidence from a Public Goods Experiment," IEW - Working Papers 016, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  3. Goeree, Jacob K. & Offerman, Theo, 2003. "Winner's curse without overbidding," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(4), pages 625-644, August.
  4. Martin Dufwenberg & Simon Gaechter & Heike Hennig-Schmidt, 2006. "The Framing of Games and the Psychology of Strategic Choice," Discussion Papers 2006-20, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
  5. Goeree, Jacob K. & Holt, Charles A. & Palfrey, Thomas R., 2002. "Quantal Response Equilibrium and Overbidding in Private-Value Auctions," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 104(1), pages 247-272, May.
  6. Yaw Nyarko & Andrew Schotter, 2002. "An Experimental Study of Belief Learning Using Elicited Beliefs," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(3), pages 971-1005, May.
  7. Andreoni, James, 1995. "Warm-Glow versus Cold-Prickle: The Effects of Positive and Negative Framing on Cooperation in Experiments," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(1), pages 1-21, February.
  8. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
  9. Kobberling, Veronika & Wakker, Peter P., 2005. "An index of loss aversion," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 122(1), pages 119-131, May.
  10. Glenn Harrison & E. Rutström, 2009. "Expected utility theory and prospect theory: one wedding and a decent funeral," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 12(2), pages 133-158, June.
  11. Olivier Armantier & Nicolas Treich, 2009. "Subjective Probabilities In Games: An Application To The Overbidding Puzzle," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 50(4), pages 1079-1102, November.
  12. Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1992. " Advances in Prospect Theory: Cumulative Representation of Uncertainty," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 5(4), pages 297-323, October.
  13. Sonnemans, Joep & Schram, Arthur & Offerman, Theo, 1998. "Public good provision and public bad prevention: The effect of framing," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 143-161, January.
  14. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-91, March.
  15. Thaler, Richard, 1980. "Toward a positive theory of consumer choice," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 39-60, March.
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