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Black Sheep and Walls of Silence

  • Gerd Muehlheusser
  • Andreas Roider

In this paper we analyze the frequently observed phenomenon that (i) some members of a team ("black sheep") exhibit behavior disliked by other (honest) team members, who (ii) nevertheless refrain from reporting such misbehavior to the authorities (they set up a "wall of silence"). Much cited examples include hospitals and police departments. In this paper, these features arise in equilibrium. An important ingredient of our model are benefits that agents receive when cooperating with each other in a team. Our results suggest that teams in which the importance of these benefits varies across team members are especially prone to the above mentioned phenomenon

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Paper provided by Universitaet Bern, Departement Volkswirtschaft in its series Diskussionsschriften with number dp0410.

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Date of creation: Jun 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ube:dpvwib:dp0410
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  1. Massimo Motta & Michele Polo, . "Leniency Programs and Cartel Prosecution," Working Papers 150, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
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  12. Jeong-Yoo Kim & Keunkwan Ryu, 2003. "Yes-Men and No-Men: Does Defiance Signal Talent?," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 159(3), pages 468-, September.
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  16. Eberhard Feess & Markus Walzl, 2004. "Self-reporting in Optimal Law Enforcement when there are Criminal Teams," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 71(283), pages 333-348, 08.
  17. Louis Kaplow & Steven Shavell, 1991. "Optimal Law Enforcement with Self-Reporting of Behavior," NBER Working Papers 3822, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. John J. Donohue III & Steven D. Levitt, 1998. "The Impact of Race on Policing, Arrest Patterns, and Crime," NBER Working Papers 6784, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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