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Heterogeneous Productivity in Voluntary Public Good Provision: An Experimental Analysis

Author

Listed:
  • Fellner, Gerlinde

    (University of Vienna)

  • Iida, Yoshio

    (Kyoto Sangyo University)

  • Kröger, Sabine

    (Université Laval)

  • Seki, Erika

    (University of Aberdeen)

Abstract

This article experimentally examines voluntary contributions when group members' marginal returns to the public good vary. The experiment implements two marginal return types, low and high, and uses the information that members have about the heterogeneity to identify the applied contribution norm. If agents are aware of the heterogeneity, contributions increase in general. However, high types contribute more than low types when contributions can be linked to the type of the donor but contribute less otherwise. Low types, on the other hand, contribute more than high types when group members are aware of the heterogeneity but contributions cannot be linked to types. Our results underline the importance of the information structure when persons with different abilities contribute to a joint project, as in the context of teamwork or charitable giving.

Suggested Citation

  • Fellner, Gerlinde & Iida, Yoshio & Kröger, Sabine & Seki, Erika, 2011. "Heterogeneous Productivity in Voluntary Public Good Provision: An Experimental Analysis," IZA Discussion Papers 5556, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5556
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Fisher, Joseph & Isaac, R. Mark & Schatzberg, Jeffrey W & Walker, James M., 1995. "Heterogenous Demand for Public Goods: Behavior in the Voluntary Contributions Mechanism," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 85(3-4), pages 249-266, December.
    2. Fangfang Tan, 2008. "Punishment in a Linear Public Good Game with Productivity Heterogeneity," De Economist, Springer, vol. 156(3), pages 269-293, September.
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    4. Kenneth S. Chan & Stuart Mestelman & Rob Moir & R. Andrew Muller Moir, 1996. "The Voluntary Provision of Public Goods under Varying Income Distributions," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 29(1), pages 54-69, February.
    5. Train,Kenneth E., 2009. "Discrete Choice Methods with Simulation," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521747387.
    6. Palfrey, Thomas R & Prisbrey, Jeffrey E, 1997. "Anomalous Behavior in Public Goods Experiments: How Much and Why?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(5), pages 829-846, December.
    7. Buckley, Edward & Croson, Rachel, 2006. "Income and wealth heterogeneity in the voluntary provision of linear public goods," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(4-5), pages 935-955, May.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Kohei Nitta, 2014. "The Effect of Income Heterogeneity in An Experiment with Global and Local Public Goods," Working Papers 201403, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Economics.
    2. Urs Fischbacher & Simeon Schudy & Sabrina Teyssier, 2014. "Heterogeneous reactions to heterogeneity in returns from public goods," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 43(1), pages 195-217, June.
    3. Sobei Oda & Erika Seki & Yan Zhou, 2013. "The Effect of Information Provision on Voluntary Contributions to Public Goods: A Field Experiment on Blood Donation," Journal of Economics and Management, College of Business, Feng Chia University, Taiwan, vol. 9(2), pages 185-209, July.
    4. Kamijo, Yoshio, 2016. "Rewards versus punishments in additive, weakest-link, and best-shot contests," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 122(C), pages 17-30.
    5. Robbett, Andrea, 2016. "Sustaining cooperation in heterogeneous groups," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 132(PA), pages 121-138.
    6. Andrea Robbett, 2016. "Community dynamics in the lab," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 46(3), pages 543-568, March.
    7. Lindokuhle Njozela & Justine Burns & Arnim Langer, 2018. "The Effects of Social Exclusion and Group Heterogeneity on the Provision of Public Goods," Games, MDPI, vol. 9(3), pages 1-21, August.
    8. Kingsley, David C., 2016. "Endowment heterogeneity and peer punishment in a public good experiment: Cooperation and normative conflict," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 49-61.
    9. Yoshio Kamijo, 2014. "A theory of sanctions: Objectives, degree of heterogeneity, and growth potential matter for optimal use of carrot or stick," Working Papers SDES-2014-13, Kochi University of Technology, School of Economics and Management, revised Oct 2014.
    10. Kölle, Felix, 2015. "Heterogeneity and cooperation: The role of capability and valuation on public goods provision," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 109(C), pages 120-134.
    11. Felix Kolle, 2012. "Heterogeneity and Cooperation in Privileged Groups: The Role of Capability and Valuation on Public Goods Provision," Discussion Papers 2012-07, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
    12. Dominik Doll & Eberhard Feess & Alwine Mohnen, 2017. "Ability, Team Composition, and Moral Hazard: Evidence from the Laboratory," Schmalenbach Business Review, Springer;Schmalenbach-Gesellschaft, vol. 18(1), pages 49-70, February.
    13. Jean-Marie Baland & Lata Gangadharan & Pushkar Maitra & Rohini Somanathan, 2013. "Repayment And Exclusion In A Microfinance Experiment," Working papers 227, Centre for Development Economics, Delhi School of Economics.
    14. De Geest, Lawrence R. & Kingsley, David C., 2019. "Endowment heterogeneity, incomplete information & institutional choice in public good experiments," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 83(C).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    public goods; voluntary contribution mechanism; heterogeneity; information; norms;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C9 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods

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