Sustaining Cooperation in Trust Games
Mary L. Rigdon
Rutgers University; National Science Foundation
Kevin A. McCabe
George Mason University - Department of Economics; George Mason University School of Law
Vernon L. Smith
Chapman University - Economic Science Institute; Chapman University School of Law
Economic Journal, Vol. 117, No. 522, pp. 991-1007, July 2007
It is well known in evolutionary game theory that population clustering in Prisoner's Dilemma games allows some cooperative strategies to invade populations of stable defecting strategies. We adapt this idea of population clustering to a two-person trust game. Without knowing it, players are typed based on their recent track record as to whether or not they are trusting (Players 1) and whether or not they are trustworthy (Players 2). They are then paired according to those types: trustors with trustworthy types, and similarly non-trustors with untrustworthy types. In the control comparisons, Players 1 are randomly repaired with Players 2 without regard to type. We ask: are there natural tendencies for people to cooperate more frequently in environments in which they experience more cooperation in comparison with controls?
Number of Pages in PDF File: 17Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: July 8, 2007
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