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The Holdout Problem and Urban Sprawl: Experimental Evidence

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  • Kurtis Swope

    () (United States Naval Academy)

  • Pamela Schmitt

    () (United States Naval Academy)

  • John Cadigan

    () (Gettysburg College)

  • Robert Shupp

    () (Michigan State University)

Abstract

Conventional wisdom as well as economic theory suggests it is more costly to reassemble fragmented land due to transactions costs and strategic bargaining costs. Both costs are expected to increase with the number of sellers. Inefficient allocation of land resources may result including property entropy (Parisi 2002), urban sprawl (Miceli and Sirmans 2007) and deteriorating inner cities. Given the difficulty of observing actual values attached by buyers and sellers to land, little empirical evidence exists to support the conventional wisdom and theoretical work. We use experimental methods to examine transactions costs and strategic bargaining costs in a land-assembly market game with one buyer, one to four sellers, and complementary exchanges. The buyer’s final earnings vary inversely with the number of sellers, ceteris paribus, indicating an incentive to purchase consolidated land. Delay costs reduce holdout, but result in lower payoffs for both buyers and sellers. Competition between sellers reduces holdout and the buyer’s total purchase price.

Suggested Citation

  • Kurtis Swope & Pamela Schmitt & John Cadigan & Robert Shupp, 2009. "The Holdout Problem and Urban Sprawl: Experimental Evidence," Departmental Working Papers 24, United States Naval Academy Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:usn:usnawp:24
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    Cited by:

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    2. Zillante, Artie & Read, Dustin C. & Seiler, Michael J., 2020. "Assembling land for urban revitalization in the presence of linchpin parcels and information asymmetries: An experimental investigation," Land Use Policy, Elsevier, vol. 99(C).
    3. Hirota, Shinichi & Suzuki-Löffelholz, Kumi & Udagawa, Daisuke, 2020. "Does owners’ purchase price affect rent offered? Experimental evidence," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(C).
    4. Kaur Karamjit, 2017. "On the Rationale of Coercive Land Acquisitions," Asian Journal of Law and Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 8(2), pages 1-16, August.
    5. Kitchens, Carl & Roomets, Alex, 2015. "Dealing with eminent domain," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 22-31.
    6. Portillo, Javier E., 2019. "Land-assembly and externalities: How do positive post-development externalities affect land aggregation outcomes?," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(C), pages 104-124.
    7. Isaac, R. Mark & Kitchens, Carl & Portillo, Javier E., 2016. "Can buyer “mobility” reduce aggregation failures in land-assembly?," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(C), pages 16-30.
    8. Winn, Abel M. & McCarter, Matthew W., 2018. "Who's holding out? An experimental study of the benefits and burdens of eminent domain," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 105(C), pages 176-185.
    9. Parente, Michael D. & Winn, Abel M., 2012. "Bargaining behavior and the tragedy of the anticommons," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 84(2), pages 475-490.
    10. Yong Liu & Ting Zhou & Jeffrey Yi-Lin Forrest, 2020. "A Multivariate Minimum Cost Consensus Model for Negotiations of Holdout Demolition," Group Decision and Negotiation, Springer, vol. 29(5), pages 871-899, October.

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