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Does the Endowment of Contributors Make a Difference in Threshold Public Good Games?


  • Federica Alberti


  • Edward J. Cartwright



We investigate experimentally whether the endowment of potential contributors changes the success rate of providing threshold public goods. We find a U shaped relationship in which the success rate is relatively high when the endowment is either relatively small or large. We also find an inverted U shaped relationship in terms of the variance of contributions. This suggests that people find it hardest to coordinate and provide threshold public goods when endowments are of ‘intermediate’ size. By this we mean that the endowment is small enough that people do need to contribute relatively a lot to fund the good, but is also large enough that no one person is critical in providing the good. Coordinating is difficult in this case because there is an incentive to free ride and the possibility to do so creating a conflict of interest.

Suggested Citation

  • Federica Alberti & Edward J. Cartwright, 2010. "Does the Endowment of Contributors Make a Difference in Threshold Public Good Games?," Studies in Economics 1009, School of Economics, University of Kent.
  • Handle: RePEc:ukc:ukcedp:1009

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    Cited by:

    1. Federica Alberti & Edward J. Cartwright, 2016. "Full agreement and the provision of threshold public goods," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 166(1), pages 205-233, January.
    2. Feige, Christian & Ehrhart, Karl-Martin, 2015. "Voting and transfer payments in a threshold public goods game," Working Paper Series in Economics 73, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Department of Economics and Business Engineering.

    More about this item


    Public Good; Threshold; Endowment;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods

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