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Democracy and compliance in public goods games


  • Gallier, Carlo


I investigate if, how, and why the effect of a contribution rule in a public goods game depends on how it is implemented: endogenously chosen or externally imposed. The rule prescribes full contributions to the public good backed by a nondeterrent sanction for those who do not comply. My experimental design allows me to disentangle to what extent the effect of the contribution rule under democracy is driven by self-selection of treatments, information transmitted via the outcome of the referendum, and democracy per se. In case treatments are endogenously chosen via a democratic decision-making process, the contribution rule significantly increases contributions to the public good. However, democratic participation does not affect participants' contribution behavior directly, after controlling for self-selection of treatments and the information transmitted by voting.

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  • Gallier, Carlo, 2017. "Democracy and compliance in public goods games," ZEW Discussion Papers 17-038, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:17038

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Vollan, Björn & Landmann, Andreas & Zhou, Yexin & Hu, Biliang & Herrmann-Pillath, Carsten, 2017. "Cooperation and authoritarian values: An experimental study in China," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 90-105.
    2. Jennifer Zelmer, 2003. "Linear Public Goods Experiments: A Meta-Analysis," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 6(3), pages 299-310, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Astrid Dannenberg & Carlo Gallier, 2020. "The choice of institutions to solve cooperation problems: a survey of experimental research," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 23(3), pages 716-749, September.
    2. Dannenberg, Astrid & Gallier, Carlo, 2019. "The choice of institutions to solve cooperation problems: A survey of experimental research," ZEW Discussion Papers 19-021, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
    3. Astrid Dannenberg & Carlo Gallier, 2019. "The Choice of Institutions to Solve Cooperation Problems: A Survey of Experimental Research," MAGKS Papers on Economics 201911, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).

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    More about this item


    laboratory experiment; public good; democracy; endogenous institutions; voting; contribution rule; compliance;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D02 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Institutions: Design, Formation, Operations, and Impact
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law

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