Strong, Bold, and Kind: Self-Control and Cooperation in Social Dilemmas
52 Pages Posted: 19 Jan 2012 Last revised: 28 May 2013
Date Written: March 28, 2013
We develop a model that relates self-control and conflict identification to cooperation patterns in social dilemmas. As predicted, we find in a laboratory public goods experiment a robust association between stronger self-control and higher levels of cooperation. This means that there is evidence for an impulse to be selfish and that cooperative behavior requires self-control effort. Free-riders differ from other contributor types only in their tendency not to have identified a self-control conflict in the first place.
Keywords: self-control, cooperation, public good, risk, experiment
JEL Classification: C91, D03, H40
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation