IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

Alliances in the Shadow of Conflict

  • Ke, Changxia
  • Konrad, Kai A.
  • Morath, Florian

Victorious alliances often fight about the spoils of war. This paper presents an experiment on the determinants of whether alliances break up and fight internally after having defeated a joint enemy. First, if peaceful sharing yields an asymmetric rent distribution, this increases the likelihood of fighting. In turn, anticipation of the higher likelihood of internal fight reduces the alliance’s ability to succeed against the outside enemy. Second, the option to make non-binding declarations on non-aggression in the relationship between alliance members does not make peaceful settlement within the alliance more likely. Third, higher differences in the alliance players’ contributions to alliance effort lead to more internal conflict and more intense fighting.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich in its series Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems with number 420.

in new window

Date of creation: 14 Jan 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:trf:wpaper:420
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Geschwister-Scholl-Platz 1, D-80539 Munich, Germany

Phone: +49-(0)89-2180-3405
Fax: +49-(0)89-2180-3510
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Michael McBride & Stergios Skaperdas, 2009. "Conflict, Settlement, and the Shadow of the Future," Working Papers 080922, University of California-Irvine, Department of Economics.
  2. Robert Shupp & Roman M. Sheremeta & David Schmidt & James Walker, 2013. "Resource Allocation Contests: Experimental Evidence," Working Papers 13-23, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
  3. Cason, Timothy & Sheremeta, Roman & Zhang, Jingjing, 2012. "Communication and Efficiency in Competitive Coordination Games," MPRA Paper 52107, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Gunnthorsdottir, Anna & Rapoport, Amnon, 2006. "Embedding social dilemmas in intergroup competition reduces free-riding," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 101(2), pages 184-199, November.
  5. Curtis Eaton & Mukesh Eswaran, 2003. "The evolution of preferences and competition: a rationalization of Veblen's theory of invidious comparisons," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 36(4), pages 832-859, November.
  6. Carmen Beviá & Luis C. Corchón, 2008. "Peace Agreements Without Commitment," Working Papers 340, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  7. Millner, Edward L & Pratt, Michael D, 1991. "Risk Aversion and Rent-Seeking: An Extension and Some Experimental Evidence," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 69(1), pages 81-92, February.
  8. Loukas Balafoutas & Rudolf Kerschbamer & Matthias Sutter, 2011. "Distributional Preferences and Competitive Behavior," Working Papers 2011-04, Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck.
  9. Jean Tirole & Roland Bénabou, 2006. "Incentives and Prosocial Behavior," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(5), pages 1652-1678, December.
  10. Stergios Skaperdas, 1996. "Contest success functions (*)," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 7(2), pages 283-290.
  11. Skaperdas, Stergios & Syropoulos, Constantinos, 1996. "Can the shadow of the future harm cooperation?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 355-372, May.
  12. Curtis R. Price & Roman M. Sheremeta, 2012. "Endowment Origin, Demographic Effects and Individual Preferences in Contests," Working Papers 12-07, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
  13. Raymond G. O'Connor, 1969. "Victory in Modern War," Journal of Peace Research, Peace Research Institute Oslo, vol. 6(4), pages 367-384, December.
  14. Sheremeta, Roman, 2009. "Contest Design: An Experimental Investigation," MPRA Paper 52101, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  15. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
  16. Anbarci, Nejat & Skaperdas, Stergios & Syropoulos, Constantinos, 2002. "Comparing Bargaining Solutions in the Shadow of Conflict: How Norms against Threats Can Have Real Effects," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 106(1), pages 1-16, September.
  17. Ke, Changxia & Konrad, Kai A. & Morath, Florian, 2013. "Brothers in arms – An experiment on the alliance puzzle," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 61-76.
  18. Klaus Abbink & Jordi Brandts, 2009. "Political autonomy and independence: Theory and experimental evidence," Working Paper series, University of East Anglia, Centre for Behavioural and Experimental Social Science (CBESS) 09-12, School of Economics, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK..
  19. Kai Konrad & Wolfgang Leininger, 2011. "Self-enforcing norms and efficient non-cooperative collective action in the provision of public goods," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 146(3), pages 501-520, March.
  20. Lundquist, Tobias & Ellingsen, Tore & Gribbe, Erik & Johannesson, Magnus, 2009. "The aversion to lying," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 70(1-2), pages 81-92, May.
  21. Roman Sheremeta & Jingjing Zhang, 2010. "Can groups solve the problem of over-bidding in contests?," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 35(2), pages 175-197, July.
  22. Emmanuel Dechenaux & Dan Kovenock & Roman Sheremeta, 2015. "A survey of experimental research on contests, all-pay auctions and tournaments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 18(4), pages 609-669, December.
  23. John Morgan & Henrik Orzen & Martin Sefton, 2008. "Endogenous Entry in Contests," Discussion Papers 2008-08, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
  24. Klaus Abbink & Jordi Brandts & Benedikt Herrmann & Henrik Orzen, 2010. "Intergroup Conflict and Intra-group Punishment in an Experimental Contest Game," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(1), pages 420-47, March.
  25. Douglas Davis & Robert Reilly, 1998. "Do too many cooks always spoil the stew? An experimental analysis of rent-seeking and the role of a strategic buyer," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 95(1), pages 89-115, April.
  26. Anderson, Lisa R & Stafford, Sarah L, 2003. "An Experimental Analysis of Rent Seeking under Varying Competitive Conditions," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 115(1-2), pages 199-216, April.
  27. Kai A. Konrad & Florian Morath, 2011. "Evolutionarily stable in-group favoritism and out-group spite in intergroup conflict," Working Papers evolutionarily_stable, Max Planck Institute for Tax Law and Public Finance.
  28. Price, Curtis R. & Sheremeta, Roman M., 2011. "Endowment effects in contests," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 111(3), pages 217-219, June.
  29. Konrad, Kai A. & Morath, Florian, 2013. "Evolutionary determinants of war," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Economics of Change SP II 2013-302, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  30. Uri Gneezy, 2005. "Deception: The Role of Consequences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 384-394, March.
  31. J. Atsu Amegashie & C. Bram Cadsby & Yang Song, 2005. "Competitive Burnout: Theory and Experimental Evidence," Working Papers 0507, University of Guelph, Department of Economics and Finance.
  32. Sheremeta, Roman M., 2010. "Experimental comparison of multi-stage and one-stage contests," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 731-747, March.
  33. B. Curtis Eaton & Mukesh Eswaran & Robert J. Oxoby, 2011. "Us and `Them': the origin of identity, and its economic implications," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 44(3), pages 719-748, August.
  34. Potters, Jan & de Vries, Casper G. & van Winden, Frans, 1998. "An experimental examination of rational rent-seeking," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 14(4), pages 783-800, November.
  35. Ahn, T.K. & Isaac, R. Mark & Salmon, Timothy C., 2011. "Rent seeking in groups," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 116-125, January.
  36. Matthias Sutter, 2008. "Individual behavior and group membership: Comment," Jena Economic Research Papers 2008-075, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
  37. Konrad, Kai A., 2009. "Strategy and Dynamics in Contests," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199549603, December.
  38. Wolfgang Leininger, 2003. "On evolutionarily stable behavior in contests," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 4(3), pages 177-186, November.
  39. Abbink, Klaus & Brandts, Jordi & Herrmann, Benedikt & Orzen, Henrik, 2012. "Parochial altruism in inter-group conflicts," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 117(1), pages 45-48.
  40. Lim, Wooyoung & Matros, Alexander & Turocy, Theodore L., 2014. "Bounded rationality and group size in Tullock contests: Experimental evidence," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 99(C), pages 155-167.
  41. Yan Chen & Sherry Xin Li, 2009. "Group Identity and Social Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(1), pages 431-57, March.
  42. Fearon, James D., 1995. "Rationalist explanations for war," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 49(03), pages 379-414, June.
  43. James D. Morrow, 1994. "Alliances, Credibility, and Peacetime Costs," Journal of Conflict Resolution, Peace Science Society (International), vol. 38(2), pages 270-297, June.
  44. Nitzan, Shmuel, 1991. "Collective Rent Dissipation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(409), pages 1522-34, November.
  45. Hua Chen & Sung H. Ham & Noah Lim, 2011. "Designing Multiperson Tournaments with Asymmetric Contestants: An Experimental Study," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 57(5), pages 864-883, May.
  46. Edward Millner & Michael Pratt, 1989. "An experimental investigation of efficient rent-seeking," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 62(2), pages 139-151, August.
  47. Katz, Eliakim & Tokatlidu, Julia, 1996. "Group competition for rents," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 12(4), pages 599-607, December.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:trf:wpaper:420. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Tamilla Benkelberg)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.