Cooperation and Punishment in Public Goods Experiments

  title={Cooperation and Punishment in Public Goods Experiments},
  author={Ernst Fehr and Simon G{\"a}chter},
  journal={Behavioral \& Experimental Economics},
This paper provides evidence that free riders are heavily punished even if punishment is costly and does not provide any material benefits for the punisher. The more free riders negatively deviate from the group standard the more they are punished. As a consequence, the existence of an opportunity for costly punishment causes a large increase in cooperation levels because potential free riders face a credible threat. We show, in particular, that in the presence of a costly punishment… 

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