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Free-Riding and Performance in Collaborative and Non-Collaborative Groups

Author

Listed:
  • Besedes, Tibor
  • Deck, Cary
  • Quintanar, Sarah
  • Sarangi, Sudipta
  • Shor, Mikhael

Abstract

Individuals bring effort to a group to achieve a common objective. Group membership introduces a free riding incentive, reducing effort, as well as a social responsibility incentive, increasing effort. This paper shows that the free riding effect is stronger. Individuals significantly reduce their effort as the difficulty of the task increases when they cannot collaborate in the group. Once collaboration is allowed, the negative effects of free riding are not observed. Collaborating groups outperform both groups without collaboration and individuals. They do as well as the best constituent member would have done on her own, thus aggregating existing knowledge.

Suggested Citation

  • Besedes, Tibor & Deck, Cary & Quintanar, Sarah & Sarangi, Sudipta & Shor, Mikhael, 2011. "Free-Riding and Performance in Collaborative and Non-Collaborative Groups," MPRA Paper 33948, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:33948
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    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/55791/1/MPRA_paper_55791.pdf
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    Cited by:

    1. Lei, Vivian & Masclet, David & Vesely, Filip, 2014. "Competition vs. communication: An experimental study on restoring trust," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 94-107.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    group behavior; decision making; free-riding; experiments;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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