Analysing Group Contract Design Using a Lab and a Lab-in-the-Field Threshold Public Good Experiment

J.A. Bouma, Binh Nguyen, Eline van der Heijden, J.J. Dijk

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

Abstract

This paper presents the results of a threshold public goods game experiment with heterogeneous players. The experiment is designed in close collaboration with the Dutch association of agri-environmental farmer collectives. Subjects are recruited at a university (“the lab”) and a farm management training centre (“lab-in-the-field”). The treatments have two different distribution rules which are varied in a within-subjects manner. After subjects have experienced both, they can vote for one of the two rules: either a differentiated bonus that results in equal payoff for all, or an undifferentiated, equal share of the group bonus. In a between-subjects manner, subjects can vote for a (minimum or average) threshold or are faced with an exogenous threshold. The results indicate that exogenous thresholds perform better, possibly because the focal point they provide facilitates coordination. With regard to the two distribution rules, the results are mixed: average contributions and payoffs are higher in the lab under the ‘equal-payoff’ rule, but there is no significant difference between the two in the lab-in-the-field, possibly because contributions in the lab-in-the-field are much less efficient. Overall, our results suggest that environmental payment schemes should not only consider farmer heterogeneity in the design of group contracts, but pay explicit attention to coordination problems as well.
LanguageEnglish
Place of PublicationTilburg
PublisherCentER, Center for Economic Research
Number of pages27
Volume2018-049
Publication statusPublished - 22 Nov 2018

Publication series

NameCentER Discussion Paper
Volume2018-049

Fingerprint

Contract design
Bonus
Farmers
Experiment
Vote
Coordination problems
Payment
Farm management
Management training

Keywords

  • Threshold public good games
  • endogenous choice
  • lab-in-the-field
  • collective agri-envorenmental management
  • group contracts
  • distribution rules
  • heterogeneous subjects

Cite this

Bouma, J. A., Nguyen, B., van der Heijden, E., & Dijk, J. J. (2018). Analysing Group Contract Design Using a Lab and a Lab-in-the-Field Threshold Public Good Experiment. (CentER Discussion Paper; Vol. 2018-049). Tilburg: CentER, Center for Economic Research.
Bouma, J.A. ; Nguyen, Binh ; van der Heijden, Eline ; Dijk, J.J. / Analysing Group Contract Design Using a Lab and a Lab-in-the-Field Threshold Public Good Experiment. Tilburg : CentER, Center for Economic Research, 2018. (CentER Discussion Paper).
@techreport{34e2dea1dc214a44b43f28baf574c98c,
title = "Analysing Group Contract Design Using a Lab and a Lab-in-the-Field Threshold Public Good Experiment",
abstract = "This paper presents the results of a threshold public goods game experiment with heterogeneous players. The experiment is designed in close collaboration with the Dutch association of agri-environmental farmer collectives. Subjects are recruited at a university (“the lab”) and a farm management training centre (“lab-in-the-field”). The treatments have two different distribution rules which are varied in a within-subjects manner. After subjects have experienced both, they can vote for one of the two rules: either a differentiated bonus that results in equal payoff for all, or an undifferentiated, equal share of the group bonus. In a between-subjects manner, subjects can vote for a (minimum or average) threshold or are faced with an exogenous threshold. The results indicate that exogenous thresholds perform better, possibly because the focal point they provide facilitates coordination. With regard to the two distribution rules, the results are mixed: average contributions and payoffs are higher in the lab under the ‘equal-payoff’ rule, but there is no significant difference between the two in the lab-in-the-field, possibly because contributions in the lab-in-the-field are much less efficient. Overall, our results suggest that environmental payment schemes should not only consider farmer heterogeneity in the design of group contracts, but pay explicit attention to coordination problems as well.",
keywords = "Threshold public good games, endogenous choice, lab-in-the-field, collective agri-envorenmental management, group contracts, distribution rules, heterogeneous subjects",
author = "J.A. Bouma and Binh Nguyen and {van der Heijden}, Eline and J.J. Dijk",
note = "CentER Discussion Paper Nr. 2018-049",
year = "2018",
month = "11",
day = "22",
language = "English",
volume = "2018-049",
series = "CentER Discussion Paper",
publisher = "CentER, Center for Economic Research",
type = "WorkingPaper",
institution = "CentER, Center for Economic Research",

}

Bouma, JA, Nguyen, B, van der Heijden, E & Dijk, JJ 2018 'Analysing Group Contract Design Using a Lab and a Lab-in-the-Field Threshold Public Good Experiment' CentER Discussion Paper, vol. 2018-049, CentER, Center for Economic Research, Tilburg.

Analysing Group Contract Design Using a Lab and a Lab-in-the-Field Threshold Public Good Experiment. / Bouma, J.A.; Nguyen, Binh; van der Heijden, Eline; Dijk, J.J.

Tilburg : CentER, Center for Economic Research, 2018. (CentER Discussion Paper; Vol. 2018-049).

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

TY - UNPB

T1 - Analysing Group Contract Design Using a Lab and a Lab-in-the-Field Threshold Public Good Experiment

AU - Bouma, J.A.

AU - Nguyen, Binh

AU - van der Heijden, Eline

AU - Dijk, J.J.

N1 - CentER Discussion Paper Nr. 2018-049

PY - 2018/11/22

Y1 - 2018/11/22

N2 - This paper presents the results of a threshold public goods game experiment with heterogeneous players. The experiment is designed in close collaboration with the Dutch association of agri-environmental farmer collectives. Subjects are recruited at a university (“the lab”) and a farm management training centre (“lab-in-the-field”). The treatments have two different distribution rules which are varied in a within-subjects manner. After subjects have experienced both, they can vote for one of the two rules: either a differentiated bonus that results in equal payoff for all, or an undifferentiated, equal share of the group bonus. In a between-subjects manner, subjects can vote for a (minimum or average) threshold or are faced with an exogenous threshold. The results indicate that exogenous thresholds perform better, possibly because the focal point they provide facilitates coordination. With regard to the two distribution rules, the results are mixed: average contributions and payoffs are higher in the lab under the ‘equal-payoff’ rule, but there is no significant difference between the two in the lab-in-the-field, possibly because contributions in the lab-in-the-field are much less efficient. Overall, our results suggest that environmental payment schemes should not only consider farmer heterogeneity in the design of group contracts, but pay explicit attention to coordination problems as well.

AB - This paper presents the results of a threshold public goods game experiment with heterogeneous players. The experiment is designed in close collaboration with the Dutch association of agri-environmental farmer collectives. Subjects are recruited at a university (“the lab”) and a farm management training centre (“lab-in-the-field”). The treatments have two different distribution rules which are varied in a within-subjects manner. After subjects have experienced both, they can vote for one of the two rules: either a differentiated bonus that results in equal payoff for all, or an undifferentiated, equal share of the group bonus. In a between-subjects manner, subjects can vote for a (minimum or average) threshold or are faced with an exogenous threshold. The results indicate that exogenous thresholds perform better, possibly because the focal point they provide facilitates coordination. With regard to the two distribution rules, the results are mixed: average contributions and payoffs are higher in the lab under the ‘equal-payoff’ rule, but there is no significant difference between the two in the lab-in-the-field, possibly because contributions in the lab-in-the-field are much less efficient. Overall, our results suggest that environmental payment schemes should not only consider farmer heterogeneity in the design of group contracts, but pay explicit attention to coordination problems as well.

KW - Threshold public good games

KW - endogenous choice

KW - lab-in-the-field

KW - collective agri-envorenmental management

KW - group contracts

KW - distribution rules

KW - heterogeneous subjects

M3 - Discussion paper

VL - 2018-049

T3 - CentER Discussion Paper

BT - Analysing Group Contract Design Using a Lab and a Lab-in-the-Field Threshold Public Good Experiment

PB - CentER, Center for Economic Research

CY - Tilburg

ER -

Bouma JA, Nguyen B, van der Heijden E, Dijk JJ. Analysing Group Contract Design Using a Lab and a Lab-in-the-Field Threshold Public Good Experiment. Tilburg: CentER, Center for Economic Research. 2018 Nov 22. (CentER Discussion Paper).