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Larger groups may alleviate collective action problems

Sung-Ha Hwang

No 1113, Working Papers from Research Institute for Market Economy, Sogang University

Abstract: This paper shows how larger group size can enhance punishing behavior in social dilemmas and hence support higher levels of cooperation. This occurs when agents can punish fellow group members who violate cooperative norms. Unlike existing approaches that focus on decentralized punishment, I view punishment to be a collective activity and show that pun- ishers can ?divide and conquer?defectors more e¢´ectively as the size of the group increases. To describe the punishment activities more precisely I develop a con?ict model which gener- alizes Lanchester?s equations - equations which describe the time evolution of the strengths of two competing armies.

Keywords: Collective action; group size; collective punishment; Lanchester?s equation (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: H41 D74 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cdm, nep-evo, nep-hpe and nep-soc
Date: 2011
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ftp://163.239.156.99/wpaper/HSH_RIME_2011-13.pdf First version, 2011 (application/pdf)

Related works:
Working Paper: Larger groups may alleviate collective action problems (2009) Downloads
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:sgo:wpaper:1113

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