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Concern for relative position, rank-order contests, and contributions to public goods

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  • Zenginobuz, Unal

Abstract

We study the consequences of concern for relative position and status in a public good economy. We consider a group of agents who are engaged in a contest for position whereby a set of rewards are distributed according to relative status. The extent of concern for rewards, together with the relative magnitude of rewards, will have an impact on agents’ willingness to contribute to public goods. Depending on the nature of prizes, i.e. whether higher private good consumption is rewarded or punished, the contest for relative position will either exacerbate or ameliorate the free-riding problem inherent in public good environments. In addition to examining the implications of concern for relative position, we also consider how an appropriate scheme of rewards might be designed to induce more efficient levels of public good.

Suggested Citation

  • Zenginobuz, Unal, 1996. "Concern for relative position, rank-order contests, and contributions to public goods," MPRA Paper 388, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:388
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    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/388/1/MPRA_paper_388.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Ed Hopkins & Tatiana Kornienko, 2010. "Which Inequality? The Inequality of Endowments versus the Inequality of Rewards," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(3), pages 106-137, August.
    2. Martin Kolmar & Dana Sisak, 2014. "(In)efficient public-goods provision through contests," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 43(1), pages 239-259, June.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    relative position; status seeking; public goods; contests;

    JEL classification:

    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods
    • D02 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Institutions: Design, Formation, Operations, and Impact

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