Voting on Punishment Systems Within a Heterogeneous Group

C.N. Noussair, F. Tan

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

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Abstract

We consider a voluntary contributions game, in which players may punish others after contributions are made and observed. The productivity of contributions, as captured in the marginal-per-capita return, differs among individuals, so that there are two types: high and low productivity. Every two or eight periods, depending on the treatment, individuals vote on a punishment regime, in which certain individuals are permitted, but not required, to have punishment directed toward them. The punishment system can condition on type and contribution history. The results indicate that the most effective regime, in terms of contributions and earnings, is one that allows punishment of low contributors only, regardless of productivity. Nevertheless, only a minority of sessions converge to this system, indicating a tendency for the voting process to lead to suboptimal institutional choice.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationTilburg
PublisherMicroeconomics
Number of pages39
Volume2009-19
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Publication series

NameCentER Discussion Paper
Volume2009-19

Fingerprint

Punishment
Voting
Productivity
Institutional choice
Voluntary contributions
Minorities
Vote

Keywords

  • Voting
  • Punishment
  • Voluntary Contributions
  • Heterogeneity
  • Experiment

Cite this

Noussair, C. N., & Tan, F. (2009). Voting on Punishment Systems Within a Heterogeneous Group. (CentER Discussion Paper; Vol. 2009-19). Tilburg: Microeconomics.
Noussair, C.N. ; Tan, F. / Voting on Punishment Systems Within a Heterogeneous Group. Tilburg : Microeconomics, 2009. (CentER Discussion Paper).
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Noussair, CN & Tan, F 2009 'Voting on Punishment Systems Within a Heterogeneous Group' CentER Discussion Paper, vol. 2009-19, Microeconomics, Tilburg.

Voting on Punishment Systems Within a Heterogeneous Group. / Noussair, C.N.; Tan, F.

Tilburg : Microeconomics, 2009. (CentER Discussion Paper; Vol. 2009-19).

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

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T1 - Voting on Punishment Systems Within a Heterogeneous Group

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AU - Tan, F.

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PY - 2009

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N2 - We consider a voluntary contributions game, in which players may punish others after contributions are made and observed. The productivity of contributions, as captured in the marginal-per-capita return, differs among individuals, so that there are two types: high and low productivity. Every two or eight periods, depending on the treatment, individuals vote on a punishment regime, in which certain individuals are permitted, but not required, to have punishment directed toward them. The punishment system can condition on type and contribution history. The results indicate that the most effective regime, in terms of contributions and earnings, is one that allows punishment of low contributors only, regardless of productivity. Nevertheless, only a minority of sessions converge to this system, indicating a tendency for the voting process to lead to suboptimal institutional choice.

AB - We consider a voluntary contributions game, in which players may punish others after contributions are made and observed. The productivity of contributions, as captured in the marginal-per-capita return, differs among individuals, so that there are two types: high and low productivity. Every two or eight periods, depending on the treatment, individuals vote on a punishment regime, in which certain individuals are permitted, but not required, to have punishment directed toward them. The punishment system can condition on type and contribution history. The results indicate that the most effective regime, in terms of contributions and earnings, is one that allows punishment of low contributors only, regardless of productivity. Nevertheless, only a minority of sessions converge to this system, indicating a tendency for the voting process to lead to suboptimal institutional choice.

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KW - Voluntary Contributions

KW - Heterogeneity

KW - Experiment

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Noussair CN, Tan F. Voting on Punishment Systems Within a Heterogeneous Group. Tilburg: Microeconomics. 2009. (CentER Discussion Paper).