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Public Goods, Social Norms and Naive Beliefs

  • Edward Cartwright

    ()

  • Amrish Patel

    ()

An individual’s contribution to a public good may be seen by others as a signal of attributes such as generosity or wealth. An individual may, therefore, choose their contribution so as to send an appropriate signal to others. In this paper we question how the inferences made by others will influence the amount contributed to the public good. Evidence suggests that individuals are naive and biased towards taking things at "face value". We contrast, therefore, contributions made to a public good if others are expected to make rational inferences versus contributions if others are expected to make naive inferences.

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File URL: ftp://ftp.ukc.ac.uk/pub/ejr/RePEc/ukc/ukcedp/0807.pdf
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Paper provided by School of Economics, University of Kent in its series Studies in Economics with number 0807.

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Date of creation: May 2008
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Handle: RePEc:ukc:ukcedp:0807
Contact details of provider: Postal: School of Economics, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NP
Phone: +44 (0)1227 827497
Web page: http://www.kent.ac.uk/economics/

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