From 'Tragedy' to 'Disaster': Welfare Effects of Commons and Anticommons Dilemmas

36 Pages Posted: 9 Jun 2004  

Sven Vanneste

Ghent University-Universiteit Gent - Department of Developmental, Personality and Social Psychology

Alain Van Hiel

Ghent University-Universiteit Gent - Department of Developmental, Personality and Social Psychology

Francesco Parisi

University of Minnesota - Law School; University of Bologna

Ben Depoorter

University of California Hastings College of Law; Ugent - CASLE; Stanford CIS

Abstract

Recently, a new concept, the anticommons dilemma, has been introduced in economic literature. In an anticommons property regime, multiple co-owners have the right to exclude one another from benefiting from a common resource. The economic literature has unveiled symmetry between commons and anticommons problems. Our experimental results reveal an interesting asymmetry. Anticommons situations generate greater opportunistic behavior than an equivalent commons dilemma (Study 1), and anticommons dilemmas yield a greater risk for underuse compared to commons dilemmas (Study 2). It was therefore concluded that anticommons might be considered as having even more severe and problematic consequences than the commons dilemma.

Keywords: Property Law

JEL Classification: K00, K11

Suggested Citation

Vanneste, Sven and Van Hiel, Alain and Parisi, Francesco and Depoorter, Ben, From 'Tragedy' to 'Disaster': Welfare Effects of Commons and Anticommons Dilemmas. International Review of Law and Economics, Vol. 26, pp. 104-122, 2006; George Mason Law & Economics Research Paper No. 04-23; Minnesota Legal Studies Research Paper No. 07-26. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=548622 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.548622

Sven Vanneste

Ghent University-Universiteit Gent - Department of Developmental, Personality and Social Psychology ( email )

Ghent, B-9000
Belgium

Alain Van Hiel (Contact Author)

Ghent University-Universiteit Gent - Department of Developmental, Personality and Social Psychology ( email )

Ghent, B-9000
Belgium

Francesco Parisi

University of Minnesota - Law School ( email )

229 19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States

University of Bologna ( email )

Piazza Scaravilli 1
40126 Bologna, fc 47100
Italy

Ben Depoorter

University of California Hastings College of Law ( email )

200 McAllister Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
United States

Ugent - CASLE ( email )

Universiteitstraat 4
Belgium

Stanford CIS ( email )

559 Nathan Abbott Way
Stanford, CA 94305-8610
United States

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