Slow to Anger and Fast to Forgive: Cooperation in an Uncertain World

77 Pages Posted: 27 May 2010 Last revised: 16 May 2011

See all articles by Drew Fudenberg

Drew Fudenberg

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

David G. Rand

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Anna Dreber

Stockholm School of Economics - Department of Economics

Date Written: December 9, 2010

Abstract

We study the experimental play of the repeated prisoner’s dilemma when intended actions are implemented with noise. In treatments where cooperation is an equilibrium, subjects cooperate substantially more than in treatments without cooperative equilibria. In all settings there was considerable strategic diversity, indicating that subjects had not fully learned the distribution of play. Furthermore, cooperative strategies yielded higher payoffs than uncooperative strategies in the treatments with cooperative equilibria. In these treatments successful strategies were “lenient” in not retaliating for the first defection, and many were “forgiving” in trying to return to cooperation after inflicting a punishment.

Suggested Citation

Fudenberg, Drew and Rand, David G. and Dreber, Anna, Slow to Anger and Fast to Forgive: Cooperation in an Uncertain World (December 9, 2010). American Economic Review, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1616396

Drew Fudenberg (Contact Author)

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) ( email )

77 Massachusetts Avenue
50 Memorial Drive
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307
United States

David G. Rand

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) ( email )

77 Massachusetts Avenue
50 Memorial Drive
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.daverand.org

Anna Dreber

Stockholm School of Economics - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 6501
Sveavagen 65
S-113 83 Stockholm
Sweden

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
643
Abstract Views
3,240
rank
39,410
PlumX Metrics