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Public Goods and Voting on Formal Sanction Schemes: An Experiment

  • Louis Puttermann
  • Jean-Robert Tyran
  • Kenju Kamei

The burgeoning literature on the use of sanctions to support public goods provision has largely neglected the use of formal or centralized sanctions. We let subjects playing a linear public goods game vote on the parameters of a formal sanction scheme capable both of resolving and of exacerbating the free-rider problem, depending on parameter settings. Most groups quickly learned to choose parameters inducing efficient outcomes. But despite uniform money payoffs implying common interest in those parameters, voting patterns suggest significant influence of cooperative orientation, political attitudes, and of gender and intelligence.

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Paper provided by The Austrian Center for Labor Economics and the Analysis of the Welfare State, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria in its series NRN working papers with number 2010-20.

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Length: 42 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:jku:nrnwps:2010_20
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  9. Umut Ones & Louis Putterman, 2004. "The Ecology of Collective Action: A Public Goods and Sanctions Experiment with Controlled Group Formation," Working Papers 2004-01, Brown University, Department of Economics.
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