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Ostracism and Common Pool Resource Management in a Developing Country: Young Fishers in the Laboratory

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  • Wisdom Akpalu
  • Peter Martin

Abstract

This paper investigates how the possibility to ostracise, which is a familiar punishment mechanism to subjects in an experiment, affects harvest in a common pool resource experiment. The experiment was framed as a fishing problem and the subjects were young fishers in Ghana. We find that the introduction of the possibility to ostracise other members of a group at a cost to the remaining members of a group decreased over-fishing significantly in comparison with the situation where ostracism was not possible. The ostracism was based on at least 50 percent voting rule. Moreover, the subjects demonstrated a strong desire to ostracise those who overfished.

Suggested Citation

  • Wisdom Akpalu & Peter Martin, 2009. "Ostracism and Common Pool Resource Management in a Developing Country: Young Fishers in the Laboratory," Working Papers 130, Economic Research Southern Africa.
  • Handle: RePEc:rza:wpaper:130
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    File URL: http://www.econrsa.org/node/153
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    Cited by:

    1. Akpalu Wisdom & Muchapondwa Edwin & Adidoye Babatunde & Simbanegavi Witness, 2015. "Public disclosure for pollution abatement: African decision-makers in a PROPER public good experiment," WIDER Working Paper Series 060, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Common Pool Resource; Experiment; Ostracism; Fishers;

    JEL classification:

    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • Q22 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Fishery

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