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The effect of voluntary participation on cooperation

Daniele Nosenzo and Fabio Tufano ()

Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 2017, vol. 142, issue C, 307-319

Abstract: We study the effects of voluntary participation on cooperation in collective action problems. Voluntary participation may foster cooperation through a mechanism of assortative selection of interaction partners based on false consensus bias, or through a mechanism whereby the decision to not participate can be used as a threat against free-riders. We examine the effectiveness of these mechanisms in a one-shot public goods experiment. Voluntary participation has a positive effect on provision only through the threat of non-participation. Assortative selection of interaction partners seems to play a minor role in our setting, whereas the threat of non-participation is a powerful force to discipline free-riding.

Keywords: Collective action; Cooperation; Voluntary participation; Experiment (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C91 D02 H41 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:142:y:2017:i:c:p:307-319

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