Democratic Punishment in Public Good Games with Perfect and Imperfect Observability
27 Pages Posted: 21 Feb 2015 Last revised: 1 Sep 2015
Date Written: August 26, 2015
In the context of repeated public good contribution games, we experimentally investigate the impact of democratic punishment, when members of a group decide by majority voting whether to inflict punishment on another member, relative to individual peer-to-peer punishment. Democratic punishment leads to more cooperation and higher average payoffs, both under perfect and imperfect monitoring of contributions, primarily by curbing anti-social punishment and thereby establishing a closer connection between a member’s contribution decision and whether subsequently being punished by others. We also find that participating in a democratic punishment procedure makes even non-contributors’ punishment intentions more pro-social.
Keywords: public good contribution experiments, punishment, voting
JEL Classification: C72, C92, H41
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation