nep-evo New Economics Papers
on Evolutionary Economics
Issue of 2013‒12‒15
six papers chosen by
Matthew Baker
City University of New York

  1. Communication and Efficiency in Competitive Coordination Games By Cason, Timothy; Sheremeta, Roman; Zhang, Jingjing
  2. Social and Moral Norms in Allocation Choices in the Laboratory By Charness, Gary; Schram, Arthur
  3. Warm-Glow Giving and Freedom to Be Selfish By Evren , Ozgur; Minardi , Stefania
  4. Experimental Games on Networks: Underpinnings of Behavior andEquilibrium Selection By Charness, Gary; Feri, Francesco; Meléndez-Jiménez, Miguel A; Sutter, Matthias
  5. Be Fruitful and Multiply? Moderate Fecundity and Long-Run Reproductive Success By Galor, Oded; Klemp, Marc
  6. Immigrants' Genes: Genetic Diversity and Economic Development in the US By Ager, Philipp; Brückner, Markus

  1. By: Cason, Timothy; Sheremeta, Roman; Zhang, Jingjing
    Abstract: Costless pre-play communication has been found to effectively facilitate coordination and enhance efficiency in games with Pareto-ranked equilibria. We report an experiment in which two groups compete in a weakest-link contest by expending costly efforts. Allowing intra-group communication leads to more aggressive competition and greater coordination than control treatments without any communication. On the other hand, allowing inter-group communication leads to less destructive competition. As a result, intra-group communication decreases while inter-group communication increases payoffs. Our experiment thus provides an example of an environment where communication can either enhance or damage efficiency. This contrasts sharply with experimental findings from public goods and other coordination games, where communication always enhances efficiency and often leads to socially optimal outcomes.
    Keywords: contest, between-group competition, within-group competition, cooperation, coordination, free-riding, experiments
    JEL: C70 D72 H41
    Date: 2012
  2. By: Charness, Gary; Schram, Arthur
    Keywords: Social and Behavioral Sciences
    Date: 2013–10–19
  3. By: Evren , Ozgur; Minardi , Stefania
    Abstract: Warm-glow refers to other-serving behavior that is valuable for the actor per se, apart from its social implications. We provide axiomatic foundations for warm-glow by viewing it as a form of preference for larger choice sets driven by one's desire for freedom to act selfishly. Specifically, an individual who experiences warm-glow values the availability of selfish options even if she plans to act unselfishly. Our theory accommodates the empirical findings on motivation crowding out and provides clear-cut predictions for empirically distinguishing between warm-glow and other motivations for prosocial behavior, a task of obvious importance for policy. The choice behavior implied by our theory subsumes Riker and Ordeshook (1968) on voting and Andreoni (1989, 1990) on the provision of public goods.
    Keywords: Warm-Glow; Freedom of Choice; Motivation Crowding Out; Altruism; Philanthropy; Public Goods; Ricardian Equivalence; Voter Turnout
    JEL: D11 D64 D81
    Date: 2013–08–20
  4. By: Charness, Gary; Feri, Francesco; Meléndez-Jiménez, Miguel A; Sutter, Matthias
    Keywords: Social and Behavioral Sciences
    Date: 2013–07–22
  5. By: Galor, Oded; Klemp, Marc
    Abstract: This research presents the first evidence that moderate fecundity was conducive long-run reproductive success within the human species. Exploiting an extensive genealogy record for nearly half a million individuals in Quebec during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, the study traces the number of descendants of early inhabitants in the subsequent four generations. Using the time interval between the date of marriage and the first live birth as a measure of reproductive capacity, the research establishes that while a higher fecundity is associated with a larger number of children, an intermediate level maximizes long-run reproductive success. The finding further indicates that the optimal level of fecundity was below the population median, suggesting that the forces of natural selection favored individuals with a lower level of fecundity. The research lends credence to the hypothesis that during the Malthusian epoch, natural selection favored individuals with a larger predisposition towards child quality, contributing to the onset of the demographic transition and the evolution of societies from an epoch of stagnation to sustained economic growth.
    Keywords: Demography, Evolution, Natural Selection, Fecundity, Quantity-Quality Trade-Off, Long-Run Reproductive Success, Development, Growth
    JEL: J10 O10
    Date: 2013–12–07
  6. By: Ager, Philipp; Brückner, Markus
    Abstract: We examine the effect of genetic diversity on economic development in the United States. Our estimation strategy exploits that immigrants from different countries of origin differed in their genetic diversity and that these immigrants settled in different regions. Based on a sample of over 2250 counties, we find that increases in genetic diversity of US counties that arose due to immigration during the 19th century had a significant positive effect on US counties' economic development. We also detect a significant positive long-run effect of 19th century immigrants' genetic diversity on contemporaneous measures of income.
    Keywords: Economic Growth, Genetic Diversity, Immigration, Melting Pot
    JEL: J11 O51 Z13
    Date: 2013–12–04

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