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Compliance Behavior in Networks: Evidence from a Field Experiment

Francesco Drago, Friederike Mengel and Christian Traxler

No 9443, IZA Discussion Papers from Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Abstract: This paper studies the spread of compliance behavior in neighborhood networks involving over 500,000 households in Austria. We exploit random variation from a field experiment which varied the content of mailings sent to potential evaders of TV license fees. Our data reveal a strong treatment spillover: 'untreated' households, who were not part of the experimental sample, are more likely to switch from evasion to compliance in response to the mailings received by their network neighbors. We analyze the spillover within a model of communication in networks based on DeGroot (1974). Consistent with the model, we find that (i) the spillover increases with the treated households' eigenvector centrality and that (ii) local concentration of equally treated households produces a lower spillover. These findings carry important implications for enforcement policies.

Keywords: neighborhood networks; social learning; spillover; evasion; field experiment (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D8 H26 Z13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-exp, nep-net and nep-soc
Date: 2015-10
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Citations: View citations in EconPapers (14) Track citations by RSS feed

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Working Paper: Compliance Behavior in Networks: Evidence from a Field Experiment (2015) Downloads
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