In this paper we evaluate how norms of symmetry and centricity aﬀect the functioning of two ways to allocate resources described in the economic anthropology literature, namely reciprocity and redistribution. The baseline reciprocity study, with no explicit priming of the norm of symmetry, features near-zero levels of allocative eﬃciency. Consistent with the anthropological framework we use throughout, we ﬁnd that priming the norm of symmetry among the players through pre-play communication dramatically increases eﬃciency. Next we study a game of redistribution and ﬁnd that in the ﬁnal stages of the game allocative eﬃciency levels consistently approach 100%, regardless of how the chief comes to acquire centricity in the group. We conclude that reciprocity and redistribution can seldom allocate resources eﬃciently in the absence of norms of symmetry and centricity in the institutional design. By way of comparison, we conﬁrm a robust ﬁnding in the experimental economics literature that a simple market exchange game reaches near-full eﬃciency, even when the traders can formulate expectations about each other’s compliance with norms.
Scheda prodotto non validato
Attenzione! I dati visualizzati non sono stati sottoposti a validazione da parte di FBK.