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Asymmetric Enforcement of Cooperation in a Social Dilemma

Nikos Nikiforakis (), Hans-Theo Normann () and Brian Wallace

No 982, Department of Economics - Working Papers Series from The University of Melbourne

Abstract: The imposition of sanctions is one of the most common means of enforcing cooperation in decentralized interactions. Typically, agents are asymmetric in the sense that each has a different sanctioning power. Using a public-good experiment we analyze such a decentralized punishment institution in which agents are asymmetric. The asymmetric punishment institution prevents the decay of cooperation towards the non-cooperative equilibrium level. Strong agents contribute less to the public good, but punish more than weak agents. At the aggregate level, we observe remarkable similarities between outcomes in asymmetric and symmetric punishment institutions.

Keywords: asymmetry; decentralized punishment; public good; punishment effectiveness (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C92 D70 H41 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 27 pages
Date: 2007
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe, nep-exp, nep-pbe and nep-soc
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (8)

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Working Paper: Asymmetric Enforcement of Cooperation in a Social Dilemma (2009) Downloads
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:mlb:wpaper:982

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