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Communication, Advice and Beliefs in an Experimental Public Goods Game


  • Ananish Chaudhuri
  • Pushkar Maitra
  • Susan Skeath


We study the efficacy of horizontal versus vertical social learning processes in a public goods game. In one treatment, subjects about to play the game can make nonbinding common knowledge announcements about their intentions while, in another, subjects do not communicate directly with group members but receive common knowledge advice from the previous generation of players. A third treatment has subjects play with neither communication nor advice. We find that groups that engage in peer communication achieve much lower levels of contribution to the public good than do groups that receive advice. We attribute this finding in part to the fact that some subjects in the communication treatment opted to make no announcement during the communication phase of play.

Suggested Citation

  • Ananish Chaudhuri & Pushkar Maitra & Susan Skeath, 2006. "Communication, Advice and Beliefs in an Experimental Public Goods Game," Monash Economics Working Papers 05/06, Monash University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:mos:moswps:2006-05

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ananish Chaudhuri & Sara Graziano & Pushkar Maitra, 2006. "Social Learning and Norms in a Public Goods Experiment with Inter-Generational Advice -super-1," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 73(2), pages 357-380.
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    13. Andrew Schotter, 2003. "Decision Making with Naive Advice," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(2), pages 196-201, May.
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    More about this item


    Voluntary contributions mechanism; Advice; Communication; Beliefs; Experiments.;

    JEL classification:

    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • C33 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • C34 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Truncated and Censored Models; Switching Regression Models

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