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The Effect of Constrained Communication and Limited Information in Governing a Common Resource

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Type: Journal Article
Author: Janssen, Marco; Tyson, Madeline; Lee, Allen
Journal: International Journal of the Commons
Volume: 8
Page(s): 617-635
Date: 2014
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/9601
Sector: Information & Knowledge
Subject(s): common pool resources
laboratory experiments
Abstract: "Allowing resource users to communicate in behavioural experiments on commons dilemmas increases the level of cooperation. In actual common pool resource dilemmas in the real world, communication is costly, which is an important detail missing from most typical experiments. We conducted experiments where participants must give up harvesting opportunities to communicate. The constrained communication treatment is compared with the effect of limited information about the state of the resource and the actions of the other participants. We find that despite making communication costly, performance of groups improves in all treatments with communication. We also find that constraining communication has a more significant effect than limiting information on the performance of groups."

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