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Type: Conference paper
Title: Revisiting kindness and confusion in public goods experiments: Comment
Author: Bayer, R.
Renner, E.
Sausgruber, R.
Citation: Proceedings of the Markets and Models: Policy Frontiers in the AWH Phillips Tradition, 2008 (ESAM08)
Publisher: NZAE
Publisher Place: New Zealand
Issue Date: 2008
Conference Name: ESAM08 (2008 : Wellington, New Zealand)
Statement of
Ralph-C Bayer, Elke Renner and Rupert Sausgruber
Abstract: We present a novel experiment to evaluate the role of confusion in explaining the dynamics of contributions in public goods experiments. In a learning condition we keep the subjects confused by withholding the information that would be necessary for them to understand the game. The comparison of the results with those of a standard public goods treatment provides a lower bound for the in°uence of confusion on contribution dynamics. We ¯nd that learning in the state of confusion explains 41 percent of the contribution dynamics in the standard public goods game. This result complements that of Houser and Kurzban (2002) who found that all of the decrease in contributions can be attributed to the reduction of confusion. We argue that their ¯ndings can be seen as an upper bound for the inluence of confusion.
Keywords: public goods experiments; learning; confusion; conditional cooperation
RMID: 0020085714
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Appears in Collections:Economics publications

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