nep-evo New Economics Papers
on Evolutionary Economics
Issue of 2008‒04‒12
three papers chosen by
Matthew Baker
City University of New York

  1. Conditional Cooperation: Disentangling Strategic from Non-Strategic Motivations By Reuben, E.; Suetens, S.
  2. Sequential reciprocity in two-player, two-stages games: an experimental analysis By Geert Dhaene; Jan Bouckaert
  3. Foundations of Intrinsic Habit Formation By Kareen Rozen

  1. By: Reuben, E.; Suetens, S. (Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research)
    Abstract: We use a novel experimental design to examine the role of reputational concerns in explaining conditional cooperation in social dilemmas. By using the strategy method in a repeated sequential prisoners? dilemma in which the probabilistic end is known, we can distinguish between strategically and non-strategically motivated cooperation. Second movers who are strong reciprocators ought to conditionally cooperate with first movers irrespective of whether the game continues or not. In contrast, strategically motivated second movers conditionally cooperate only if the game continues and they otherwise defect. Experimental results, with two different subject pools, indicate reputation building is used around 30% of the time, which accounts for between 50% and 75% of all realized cooperative actions. The percentage of strong reciprocators varied between 6% to 23%.
    Keywords: cooperation;reputation building;strong reciprocity;repeated prisoners? dilemma
    JEL: C91 D01 D74
    Date: 2008
  2. By: Geert Dhaene; Jan Bouckaert
    Abstract: We experimentally test Dufwenberg and Kirchsteiger’s (2004) theory of sequential reciprocity in a sequential prisoner’s dilemma (SPD) and a mini-ultimatum game (MUG). Data on behavior and first- and second-order beliefs allow us to classify each subject’s behavior as a material best response, a reciprocity best response, both, or none. We found that in both games the behavior of about 80% of the firstmovers was a material best response, a reciprocity best response, or both. The remaining 20% of first-movers almost always made choices that were “too kind” according to the theory of reciprocity. Secondmover behavior, in both games, was fully in line with the predictions of the theory. The average behavior and beliefs across subjects were compatible with a sequential reciprocity equilibrium in the SPD but not in the MUG. We also found first- and second-order beliefs to be unbiased in the SPD and nearly unbiased in the MUG.
    Keywords: sequential reciprocity; sequential prisoner’s dilemma; mini-ultimatum game.
    JEL: A13 C70 C92 D63
    Date: 2008–03
  3. By: Kareen Rozen
    Date: 2008–04–04

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