IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/unl/novafr/wp1903.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Identifying communication spillovers in lab in the field experiments

Author

Listed:
  • Alexander Coutts

Abstract

The use of lab in the field experiments has increased dramatically, given benefits of studying relevant populations. Conducted in environments where researchers must relinquish the control a standard laboratory o ers, they raise the specter of communication from past to future participants, posing problems for inference. While researchers may take steps to avoid spillovers, little is known about the mechanics of such spillovers in lab in the field settings, nor to what extent they may bias inference. In rural villages participating in public goods games in Rwanda, I recover estimates of these spillovers by matching villages on all available pre-study observables, comparing those with and without communication opportunities. I find communication led to substantial unanticipated increases in cooperation, driven by conditional cooperators. I conclude with advice to manage potential bias from spillovers.

Suggested Citation

  • Alexander Coutts, 2019. "Identifying communication spillovers in lab in the field experiments," NOVAFRICA Working Paper Series wp1903, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Faculdade de Economia, NOVAFRICA.
  • Handle: RePEc:unl:novafr:wp1903
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://novafrica.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/1903.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ananish Chaudhuri & Sara Graziano & Pushkar Maitra, 2006. "Social Learning and Norms in a Public Goods Experiment with Inter-Generational Advice -super-1," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 73(2), pages 357-380.
    2. Jeff Carpenter & Glenn Harrison & John List, 2005. "Field experiments in economics: An introduction," Artefactual Field Experiments 00034, The Field Experiments Website.
    3. Glenn W. Harrison & John A. List, 2004. "Field Experiments," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(4), pages 1009-1055, December.
    4. List John A., 2007. "Field Experiments: A Bridge between Lab and Naturally Occurring Data," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 5(2), pages 1-47, April.
    5. Glenn W. Harrison & Morten I. Lau & E. Elisabet Rutström, 2007. "Estimating Risk Attitudes in Denmark: A Field Experiment," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 109(2), pages 341-368, June.
    6. Avdeenko, Alexandra & Gilligan, Michael J., 2015. "International Interventions to Build Social Capital: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Sudan," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 109(3), pages 427-449, August.
    7. Crawford, Vincent, 1998. "A Survey of Experiments on Communication via Cheap Talk," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 78(2), pages 286-298, February.
    8. Isaac, R Mark & Walker, James M, 1988. "Communication and Free-Riding Behavior: The Voluntary Contribution Mechanism," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 26(4), pages 585-608, October.
    9. Bochet, Olivier & Putterman, Louis, 2009. "Not just babble: Opening the black box of communication in a voluntary contribution experiment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 53(3), pages 309-326, April.
    10. Bednar, Jenna & Chen, Yan & Liu, Tracy Xiao & Page, Scott, 2012. "Behavioral spillovers and cognitive load in multiple games: An experimental study," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 12-31.
    11. Ananish Chaudhuri, 2011. "Sustaining cooperation in laboratory public goods experiments: a selective survey of the literature," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 14(1), pages 47-83, March.
    12. Enos, Ryan D. & Gidron, Noam, 2018. "Exclusion and Cooperation in Diverse Societies: Experimental Evidence from Israel," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 112(4), pages 742-757, November.
    13. Edward Miguel & Michael Kremer, 2004. "Worms: Identifying Impacts on Education and Health in the Presence of Treatment Externalities," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 72(1), pages 159-217, January.
    14. Imbens,Guido W. & Rubin,Donald B., 2015. "Causal Inference for Statistics, Social, and Biomedical Sciences," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521885881, January.
    15. Michael Kosfeld & Devesh Rustagi, 2015. "Leader Punishment and Cooperation in Groups: Experimental Field Evidence from Commons Management in Ethiopia," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(2), pages 747-783, February.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Fortuna Casoria & Arno Riedl & Peter Werner, 2020. "Behavioral Aspects of Communication in Organizations," Post-Print halshs-03024050, HAL.
    2. Feltovich, Nick & Grossman, Philip J., 2015. "How does the effect of pre-play suggestions vary with group size? Experimental evidence from a threshold public-good game," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 79(C), pages 263-280.
    3. Sujoy Chakravarty & Carine Sebi & E. Somanathan & Emmanuel Theophilus, 2013. "The Demographics of Cooperation: Evidence from a Field Experiment in the Gori-Ganga Basin," Journal of Economics and Management, College of Business, Feng Chia University, Taiwan, vol. 9(2), pages 231-269, July.
    4. Sujoy Chakravarty & Carine Sebi & E. Somanathan & E. Theophilus, 2011. "Voluntary Contribution in the Field: An Experiment in the Indian Himalayas," Working Papers id:3490, eSocialSciences.
    5. Sujoy Chakravarty & Carine Sebi & E. Somanathan & Emmanuel Theophilus, 2010. "The Demographics of cooperation: Evidence from a field experiment in the Gori-Ganga Basin," Discussion Papers 10-07, Indian Statistical Institute, Delhi.
    6. Hong, Fuhai & Lim, Wooyoung, 2016. "Voluntary participation in public goods provision with Coasian bargaining," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 126(PA), pages 102-119.
    7. David M. McEvoy & Tobias Haller & Esther Blanco, 2019. "The Role of Non-Binding Pledges in Social Dilemmas with Mitigation and Adaptation," Working Papers 2019-04, Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck.
    8. Sandra Polania-Reyes, 2016. "Disentangling Social Capital: Lab-in-the-Field Evidence on Coordination, Networks, and Cooperation," Artefactual Field Experiments 00565, The Field Experiments Website.
    9. Caleb A. Cox & Brock Stoddard, 2018. "Common-Value Public Goods and Informational Social Dilemmas," Working Papers 18-04, Department of Economics, Appalachian State University.
    10. Chesney, Thomas & Chuah, Swee-Hoon & Hoffmann, Robert, 2009. "Virtual world experimentation: An exploratory study," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 618-635, October.
    11. Fehr, Dietmar & Sutter, Matthias, 2019. "Gossip and the efficiency of interactions," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 113(C), pages 448-460.
    12. Eric Floyd & John A. List, 2016. "Using Field Experiments in Accounting and Finance," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(2), pages 437-475, May.
    13. Lopera Baena, Maria Adelaida, 2016. "Evidence of Conditional and Unconditional Cooperation in a Public Goods Game: Experimental Evidence from Mali," VfS Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145797, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    14. Beekman, Gonne & Bulte, Erwin & Nillesen, Eleonora, 2014. "Corruption, investments and contributions to public goods: Experimental evidence from rural Liberia," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 115(C), pages 37-47.
    15. Balafoutas, Loukas & Nikiforakis, Nikos, 2012. "Norm enforcement in the city: A natural field experiment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(8), pages 1773-1785.
    16. Handberg, Øyvind Nystad & Angelsen, Arild, 2015. "Experimental tests of tropical forest conservation measures," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 118(C), pages 346-359.
    17. Koukoumelis, Anastasios & Levati, M. Vittoria & Weisser, Johannes, 2012. "Leading by words: A voluntary contribution experiment with one-way communication," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 81(2), pages 379-390.
    18. Stephen V. Burks & Daniele Nosenzo & Jon Anderson & Matthew Bombyk & Derek Ganzhorn & Lorenz Goette & Aldo Rustichini, 2015. "Lab Measures of Other-Regarding Preferences Can Predict Some Related on-the-Job Behavior: Evidence from a Large Scale Field Experiment," Discussion Papers 2015-21, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
    19. Alevy, Jonathan E. & Cristi, Oscar & Melo, Oscar, 2010. "Right-to-Choose Auctions: A Field Study of Water Markets in the Limari Valley of Chile," Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, Northeastern Agricultural and Resource Economics Association, vol. 39(2), pages 1-14, April.
    20. Kate Baldwin & Rikhil R. Bhavnani, 2013. "Ancillary Experiments: Opportunities and Challenges," WIDER Working Paper Series wp-2013-024, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Lab experiments; public goods games; field experiments; development; Rwanda; East Africa; spillovers; information transmission; social learning;
    All these keywords.

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:unl:novafr:wp1903. 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: (Susana Lopes). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/feunlpt.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.