Who are the voluntary leaders? Experimental evidence from a sequential contribution game

Date: 2016
By: Raphaële Préget (LAMETA – Laboratoire Montpelliérain d’Économie Théorique et Appliquée – Montpellier SupAgro – Centre international d’études supérieures en sciences agronomiques – UM3 – Université Paul-Valéry – Montpellier 3 – INRA Montpellier – Institut national de la recherche agronomique [Montpellier] – UM – Université de Montpellier – CNRS – Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
Phu Nguyen Van (UMR Beta – CNRS – Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
Marc Willinger (LAMETA – Laboratoire Montpelliérain d’Économie Théorique et Appliquée – Montpellier SupAgro – Centre international d’études supérieures en sciences agronomiques – UM3 – Université Paul-Valéry – Montpellier 3 – INRA Montpellier – Institut national de la recherche agronomique [Montpellier] – UM – Université de Montpellier – CNRS – Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Université de Montpellier)
URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:hal:journl:hal-01300195&r=net
We rely on the methodology of Fischbacher et al. (2001) in order to identify subjects’ behavioral types. We then link the likelihood to act as a leader in a repeated public goods game to the elicited behavioral types. The leader in a group is defined as the subject who voluntarily decides in the first place about his contribution. The leader’s contribution is then reported publicly to the remaining group members who take their contribution decisions simultaneously. Our main findings are that leaders emerge in almost all rounds and that subjects who are identified as conditional cooperators are more likely to act as leaders than other types, e.g. free-riders or triangle-contributors. We also find that voluntary leaders, irrespective of their behavioral type, contribute always more than followers. However the presence of leadership does not prevent the decay that is commonly observed in linear public goods experiments.
Keywords: Voluntary Contribution Mechanism,Leadership,Public Goods,Experimental Economics
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