nep-res New Economics Papers
on Resource Economics
Issue of 2008‒09‒05
three papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
Universidad de la Republica

  1. Cooperativeness and Impatience in the Tragedy of the Commons By Ernst Fehr; Andreas Leibbrandt
  2. Total Factor Productivity Growth when Factors of Production Generate Environmental Externalities By Vouvaki, Dimitra; XEPAPADEAS, Anastasios
  3. Model Uncertainty, Ambiguity and the Precautionary Principle: Implications for Biodiversity Management By Vardas, Giannis; XEPAPADEAS, Anastasios

  1. By: Ernst Fehr; Andreas Leibbrandt
    Abstract: This paper examines the role of other-regarding and time preferences for cooperation in the field. We study the preferences of fishermen whose main, and often only, source of income stems from using a common pool resource (CPR). The exploitation of a CPR involves a negative interpersonal and inter-temporal externality because individuals who exploit the CPR reduce the current and the future yield for both others and themselves. Accordingly, economic theory predicts that more cooperative and more patient individuals should be less likely to exploit the CPR. Our data supports this prediction because fishermen who exhibit a higher propensity for cooperation in a laboratory public goods experiment, and those who show more patience in a laboratory time preference experiment, exploit the fishing grounds less in their daily lives. Moreover, because the laboratory public goods game exhibits no inter-temporal spillovers, measured time preferences should not predict cooperative behavior in the laboratory. This prediction is also borne out by our data. Thus, laboratory preference measures are useful to capture important dimensions of field behavior.
    Keywords: Cooperation, common pool resource, experiments, generalizability, methodology
    JEL: B4 C9 D8 O1
    Date: 2008–07
  2. By: Vouvaki, Dimitra; XEPAPADEAS, Anastasios
    Abstract: Total factor productivity growth (TFPG) has been traditionally associated with technological change. We show that when a factor of production, such as energy, generates an environmental externality in the form of CO₂ emissions which is not internalized because of lack of environmental policy, then TFPG estimates could be biased. This is because the contribution of environment as a factor of production is not accounted for in the growth accounting framework. Empirical estimates confirm this hypothesis and suggest that part of what is regarded as technology's contribution to growth could be attributed to the use of environment in output production.
    Keywords: Total Factor Productivity; Sources of Growth; Environmental Externalities; Energy; Environmental Policy
    JEL: Q56 O4
    Date: 2008–08–28
  3. By: Vardas, Giannis; XEPAPADEAS, Anastasios
    Abstract: We analyze ecosystem management under `unmeasurable' Knightian uncertainty or ambiguity which, given the uncertainties characterizing ecosystems, might be a more appropriate framework relative to the classic risk case (measurable uncertainty). This approach is used as a formal way of modelling the precautionary principle in the context of least favorable priors and maxmin criteria. We provide biodiversity management rules which incorporate the precautionary principle. These rules take the form of either safety margins and minimum safety standards or optimal harvesting under precautionary approaches.
    Keywords: Knightian uncertainty; ambiguity; risk; precautionary principle; biodiversity management; optimal harvesting; robust control.
    JEL: D81 Q20
    Date: 2008–08–10

This nep-res issue is ©2008 by Maximo Rossi. 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.