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Seeds of Learning: Uncertainty and Technology Adoption in an Ecosystem-Based Adaptation Game

Babatunde Abidoye, Sahan Dissanayake () and Sarah Jacobson ()

No 2020-08, Department of Economics Working Papers from Department of Economics, Williams College

Abstract: We introduce an interactive game exploring ecosystem-based adaptation to climate change, with a focus on technology adoption and uncertainty. The game is useful in academic classes and trainings for policymakers and stakeholders. Participants play the role of small-scale farmers in a developing country where their farming practices cause erosion that pollutes waterways, while at the same time climate change is making farmers more vulnerable to natural threats like flooding. The game gives participants a series of opportunities to adopt ecosystem-based adaptation practices: for example, a riparian buffer strip, low-till farming, and agroforestry. The practices differ in the uncertainty surrounding their effects on yields. The game deploys three policies to encourage adoption: a flat payment, a conservation auction, and a flat payment with a pilot bonus for early adoption. Players observe each other’s choices and outcomes, which allows for social learning. Participants get a hands-on understanding of climate change impact and adaptation, ecosystem services, payment for ecosystem service programs, choice under uncertainty, social learning, adoption of new technology, learning spillovers, cost-effective conservation, and conservation auctions. We provide all materials necessary to run the game, plus suggested readings and suggestions for discussions and assignments.

Keywords: classroom game; climate change adaptation; ecosystem-based adaptation; learning; payment for environmental services; technology adoption; uncertainty (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: A20 D80 Q16 Q54 Q56 Q58 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 55 pages
Date: 2020-08-11
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-agr, nep-env and nep-gth
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Related works:
Journal Article: Seeds of Learning: Uncertainty and Technology Adoption in an Ecosystem-Based Adaptation Game (2021) Downloads
Working Paper: Seeds of Learning: Uncertainty and Technology Adoption in an Ecosystem-Based Adaptation Game (2021) Downloads
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