Communication, Commitment, and Deception in Social Dilemmas: Experimental Evidence

Quaderni DSE Working Paper No. 751

46 Pages Posted: 30 May 2011

See all articles by Gabriele Camera

Gabriele Camera

Chapman University - Economic Science Institute; University of Bologna - Dept. of Economics

Marco Casari

University of Bologna - Department of Economics

Maria Bigoni

University of Bologna - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Date Written: May 13, 2011

Abstract

Social norms of cooperation are studied under several forms of communication. In an experiment, strangers could make public statements before playing a prisoner’s dilemma. The interaction was repeated indefinitely, which generated multiple equilibria.

Communication could be used as a tool to either signal intentions to coordinate on Pareto-superior outcomes, to deceive others, or to credibly commit to actions. Some forms of communication did not promote the incidence of efficient Nash play, and sometimes reduced it. Surprisingly, cooperation suffered when subjects could publicly commit to actions.

Keywords: coordination, cheap-talk, deception, indefinitely repeated game, social norms

JEL Classification: C70, C90, D80

Suggested Citation

Camera, Gabriele and Casari, Marco and Bigoni, Maria, Communication, Commitment, and Deception in Social Dilemmas: Experimental Evidence (May 13, 2011). Quaderni DSE Working Paper No. 751. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1854132 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1854132

Gabriele Camera (Contact Author)

Chapman University - Economic Science Institute ( email )

Orange, CA 92866
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www1.chapman.edu/~camera/

University of Bologna - Dept. of Economics ( email )

Strada Maggiore 45
Bologna, 40125
Italy

Marco Casari

University of Bologna - Department of Economics ( email )

Strada Maggiore 45
Bologna, 40125
Italy

Maria Bigoni

University of Bologna - Department of Economics ( email )

Piazza Scaravilli 2
Bologna, Bologna 40126
Italy
+390512098134 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.unibo.it/sitoweb/maria.bigoni/en

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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