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An Experimental study on the information structure in teams

Sandra Ludwig and Christina Strassmair

Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems from Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich

Abstract: Is free-riding in teams reduced when one member receives a signal on his colleagueís performance? And how does free-riding depend on the signal's type? We address these questions in experimental teams in which two agents sequentially exert effort to contribute to the team output. We vary the type of information the second mover receives prior to his effort choice and find that agents work more when signals are available. Overall, behavior differs from predictions of standard theory. Signals that are predicted to have no effect are, in fact, influential and signals that are predicted to have an effect are redundant.

Keywords: Team production; Free-riding; Experiment; Information; Signal (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C92 J30 M50 D82 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2009-09
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe, nep-cta and nep-exp
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