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Indirect Social Sanctions from Monetarily Unaffected Strangers in a Public Good Game

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Abstract

Several economists have maintained that social sanctions can enforce cooperation in public good situations. This experimental study investigates whether indirect social sanctions from monetarily unaffected observers can increase contributions to a public good. The experiment has two treatment effects. First, each participant's identity and contribution to the public good is revealed to the monetarily unaffected observers. Second, information affecting participants' beliefs about the degree to which the observers are contributors is introduced. The data suggests that indirect social sanctions from monetarily unaffected observers can increase voluntary contributions to public goods, provided that the subjects have reason to believe that the observers themselves are strong contributors.

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  • Mari Rege & Kjetil Telle, 2003. "Indirect Social Sanctions from Monetarily Unaffected Strangers in a Public Good Game," Discussion Papers 359, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
  • Handle: RePEc:ssb:dispap:359
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    File URL: http://www.ssb.no/a/publikasjoner/pdf/DP/dp359.pdf
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    Cited by:

    1. Alexis Belianin & Marco Novarese, 2005. "Trust, communication and equlibrium behaviour in public goods," Experimental 0506001, EconWPA.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    conditional; cooperation; public good; social approval; social norms;

    JEL classification:

    • A13 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Social Values
    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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