The role of communication in resolving commons dilemmas: Experimental evidence with heterogeneous appropriators

Steven Hackett, Edella Schlager, James Walker

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

Communication has been shown to be an effective mechanism for promoting efficient resource use in homogeneous common-pool resource settings. Communication allows appropriators the opportunity to agree on an aggregate appropriation target and coordinate over the selection of input allocation rules. When appropriators are identical, these rules result in identical input allocations, which facilitates cooperation. We examine the robustness of communication as an efficiency-enhancing mechanism in settings where appropriators differ in input endowments. This heterogeneity creates a distributional conflict over access to common-pool resources. This conflict can cause self-governance to fail. We present findings from a series of experiments where heterogeneous endowments are assigned: (1 ) randomly, and appropriators have complete information, (2 ) through an auction, and appropriators have complete information, and (3) randomly, and appropriators have incomplete and asymmetric information. These findings are contrasted with rules from CPR field settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationExperiments in Environmental Economics
PublisherTaylor and Francis Inc.
Pages435-462
Number of pages28
Volume1
ISBN (Electronic)9781315196350
ISBN (Print)9781138717398
StatePublished - Apr 27 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)

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