Group behaviour in tacit coordination games with focal points: An experimental investigation
Stefania Sitzia and
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Stefania Sitzia: University of East Anglia
Jiwei Zheng: Universtiy of East Anglia
No 17-02R, Working Paper series, University of East Anglia, Centre for Behavioural and Experimental Social Science (CBESS) from School of Economics, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK.
This paper reports an experimental investigation of Schelling's theory of focal points that compares group and individual behaviour. We find that when players' interests are perfectly aligned, groups choose more often the label salient option and achieve higher coordination success than individuals. However, in games with conflict of interest, groups do not always perform better than individuals, especially when the degree of conflict is substantial. We also find that groups outperform individuals in games in which identifying the solution to the coordination problem requires some level of cognitive sophistication (i.e. trade-off games). Finally, players that successfully identify the solution to these games achieve also greater coordination rates in games with a low degree of conflict than other players. This result raises questions of whether finding the focal point is more a matter of logic rather than imagination as instead Schelling argued.
Keywords: groups; coordination; label cues; cognition (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C72 C78 C91 C92 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe, nep-cdm, nep-evo, nep-exp, nep-gth and nep-hpe
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