Indefinitely Repeated Contests: An Experimental Study

45 Pages Posted: 25 Feb 2018 Last revised: 22 Jul 2018

See all articles by Philip Brookins

Philip Brookins

Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods

Dmitry Ryvkin

Florida State University

Andrew Smyth

Marquette University - Department of Economics

Date Written: July 12, 2018

Abstract

We experimentally explore indefinitely repeated contests. Theory predicts more cooperation, in the form of lower expenditures, in indefinitely repeated contests with a longer expected time horizon, yet our data do not support this prediction. Theory also predicts more cooperation in indefinitely repeated contests compared to finitely repeated contests of the same expected length, but we find no significant difference empirically. When controlling for risk and gender, we actually find significantly higher long-run expenditure in some indefinite contests relative to finite contests. Finally, theory predicts no difference in cooperation across indefinitely repeated winner-take-all and proportional-prize contests. We find significantly less cooperation in the latter, because female participants expend more on average than their male counterparts in our data. Our paper extends the experimental literature on indefinitely repeated games to contests and, more generally, contributes to an infant empirical literature on behavior in indefinitely repeated games with "large" strategy spaces.

Keywords: contest, repeated game, cooperation, experiment

JEL Classification: C72, C73, C91, D72

Suggested Citation

Brookins, Philip and Ryvkin, Dmitry and Smyth, Andrew, Indefinitely Repeated Contests: An Experimental Study (July 12, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3123996 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3123996

Philip Brookins

Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods ( email )

SternStr. 3
Bonn, 53111
Germany
15202562844 (Phone)

Dmitry Ryvkin

Florida State University ( email )

Tallahassee, FL 30306-2180
United States

Andrew Smyth (Contact Author)

Marquette University - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 1881
Milwaukee, WI 53201-1881
United States

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
45
Abstract Views
607
PlumX Metrics