nep-evo New Economics Papers
on Evolutionary Economics
Issue of 2023‒04‒10
two papers chosen by
Matthew Baker
City University of New York

  1. From Personal Values to Social Norms By Francesca Barigozzi; Natalia Montinari
  2. Choice Flexibility and Long-Run Cooperation By Gabriele Camera; Jaehong Kim; David Rojo Arjona

  1. By: Francesca Barigozzi; Natalia Montinari
    Abstract: In Experimental Economics, coordination games are used to elicit social norms as incentivized beliefs about others’ beliefs. Conversely, representative surveys like the World Values Survey elicit social norms as personal attitudes and values that are independent of others’ beliefs. Using a representative survey of the Italian population (N = 1, 501), we compare the two ways of measuring social norms with gender roles as a working example and find the following results. At the aggregated level, appropriateness ratings obtained under the two elicitation methods follow the same pattern but differ significantly in magnitude, with the incentivized social norm elicitation depicting a more conservative view on gender roles than the unincentivized one. The analysis carried out at the individual level allows us to explain the previous result. Most respondents report personal values as more progressive than the perceived norm, which may be consistent with a desirability and/or a self-image bias. This occurs irrespectively of whether respondents correctly perceive the social norm or not. We conclude that analyses based on personal values lead to a proxy of gender norms significantly more progressive than the norms elicited in coordination games.
    JEL: A13 C90 D01 J16
    Date: 2023–03
  2. By: Gabriele Camera (Chapman University); Jaehong Kim (Xiamen University); David Rojo Arjona (Chapman University)
    Abstract: Understanding how incentives and institutions help scaling up cooperation is important, especially when strategic uncertainty is considerable. Evidence suggests that this is challenging even when full cooperation is theoretically sustainable thanks to indefinite repetition. In a controlled social dilemma experiment, we show that adding partial cooperation choices to the usual binary choice environment can raise cooperation and efficiency. Under suitable incentives, partial cooperation choices enable individuals to cheaply signal their desire to cooperate, reducing strategic uncertainty. The insight is that richer choice sets can form the basis of a language meaningful for coordinating on cooperation.
    Keywords: experiments, repeated games, social dilemmas, strategy estimation
    JEL: C70 C90 D03 E02
    Date: 2023

This nep-evo issue is ©2023 by Matthew Baker. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.