IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Noisy commitments: The impact of information accuracy on efficiency

  • Eyal Ert


    (Max Wertheimer Minerva Center for Cognitive Research, Faculty of Industrial Engineering and Management, Israeli Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel)

  • Andreas Nicklisch


    (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods, Bonn)

Registered author(s):

    We report an experiment designed to test the influence of noisy commitments on efficiency in a simple bargaining game. We investigate two different levels of commitment reliability in a variant of the peasant-dictator game. Theoretical analysis suggests that the reliability of commitments in this game does not affect efficiency. We find that accurate commitments promote efficiency, as expected by game theory. However, noisy commitments are found to impair efficiency. We explain this effect by the differences between incentives off the equilibrium path under conditions of accurate commitments and noisy commitments. This difference changes the game structure and in the current game facilitates more random responses.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Paper provided by Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods in its series Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods with number 2006_4.

    in new window

    Length: 23 pages
    Date of creation: Feb 2006
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:mpg:wpaper:2006_04
    Contact details of provider: Postal: Kurt-Schumacher-Str. 10 - D- 53113 Bonn
    Phone: +49-(0)228 / 91416-0
    Fax: +49-(0)228 / 91416-55
    Web page:

    More information through EDIRC

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    as in new window
    1. Van Huyck John B. & Battalio Raymond C. & Walters Mary F., 1995. "Commitment versus Discretion in the Peasant-Dictator Game," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 143-170, July.
    2. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:107:y:1992:i:3:p:865-88 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Guth, Werner & Schmittberger, Rolf & Schwarze, Bernd, 1982. "An experimental analysis of ultimatum bargaining," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 367-388, December.
    4. Kyle Bagwell, 1992. "Commitment and Observability in Games," Discussion Papers 1014, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
    5. Johnson, Eric J, et al, 1993. " Framing, Probability Distortions, and Insurance Decisions," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 7(1), pages 35-51, August.
    6. Rabin, Matthew, 1993. "Incorporating Fairness into Game Theory and Economics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(5), pages 1281-1302, December.
    7. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:111:y:1996:i:1:p:1-19 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. V. Prasnikar & A. Roth, 1998. "Considerations of fairness and strategy: experimental data from sequential games," Levine's Working Paper Archive 451, David K. Levine.
    9. Gary E. Bolton & Elena Katok & Axel Ockenfels, 2004. "How Effective Are Electronic Reputation Mechanisms? An Experimental Investigation," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 50(11), pages 1587-1602, November.
    10. Forsythe Robert & Horowitz Joel L. & Savin N. E. & Sefton Martin, 1994. "Fairness in Simple Bargaining Experiments," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 347-369, May.
    11. Burnham, Terence & McCabe, Kevin & Smith, Vernon L., 2000. "Friend-or-foe intentionality priming in an extensive form trust game," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 57-73, September.
    12. Axel Ockenfels & Gary E. Bolton, 2000. "ERC: A Theory of Equity, Reciprocity, and Competition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(1), pages 166-193, March.
    13. Berg Joyce & Dickhaut John & McCabe Kevin, 1995. "Trust, Reciprocity, and Social History," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 122-142, July.
    14. Armin Falk & Ernst Fehr & Urs Fischbacher, . "On the Nature of Fair Behavior," IEW - Working Papers 017, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
    15. Roth, Alvin E. & Erev, Ido, 1995. "Learning in extensive-form games: Experimental data and simple dynamic models in the intermediate term," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 164-212.
    16. Andreoni,J. & Brown,P.M. & Vesterlund,L., 1999. "What makes an allocation fair? : Some experimental evidence," Working papers 4, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
    17. Hart, Oliver, 1995. "Firms, Contracts, and Financial Structure," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198288817.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:mpg:wpaper:2006_04. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Marc Martin)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.