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Establishing Cooperation between Groups: Ingroup versus Outgroup Punishment

  • Christian Stoff
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    We analyse interethnic cooperation in an infinitely repeated prisoner’s dilemma when members of one group are unable to target punishment towards individual defectors from the other group. We first show that indiscriminate punishment may sustain cooperation in this setting. Our main result, however, is that the introduction of ingroup punishment in addition to outgroup punishment represents a better sanctioning institution in the sense that cooperative outcomes may persist in situations where outgroup punishment alone fails to induce cooperation. Our findings are consistent with historical evidence on the dynamics of interethnic conflicts.

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    File URL: http://www.soi.uzh.ch/research/wp/2004/wp0416.pdf
    File Function: Revised version, 2006
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    Paper provided by Socioeconomic Institute - University of Zurich in its series SOI - Working Papers with number 0416.

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    Length: 51 pages
    Date of creation: Dec 2004
    Date of revision: Feb 2006
    Handle: RePEc:soz:wpaper:0416
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    1. David Kreps & Paul Milgrom & John Roberts & Bob Wilson, 2010. "Rational Cooperation in the Finitely Repeated Prisoners' Dilemma," Levine's Working Paper Archive 239, David K. Levine.
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    12. Greif, Avner & Milgrom, Paul & Weingast, Barry R, 1994. "Coordination, Commitment, and Enforcement: The Case of the Merchant Guild," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(4), pages 745-76, August.
    13. Gary Bornstein, 2002. "Intergroup conflict: Individual, group and collective interests," Discussion Paper Series dp297, The Federmann Center for the Study of Rationality, the Hebrew University, Jerusalem.
    14. Eliana La Ferrara, . "Ethnicity and Reciprocity: A model of Credit Transactions in Ghana," Working Papers 193, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
    15. Greif, Avner, 1993. "Contract Enforceability and Economic Institutions in Early Trade: the Maghribi Traders' Coalition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(3), pages 525-48, June.
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