Securing property rights: a dilemma experiment in Austria, Mexico, Mongolia, South Korea and the United States

Article


Ahn, T., Balafoutas, L., Batsaikhan, M., Campos-Ortiz, F., Putterman, L. and Sutter, M. 2016. Securing property rights: a dilemma experiment in Austria, Mexico, Mongolia, South Korea and the United States. Journal of Public Economics. 143, pp. 115-124. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpubeco.2016.08.015
TypeArticle
TitleSecuring property rights: a dilemma experiment in Austria, Mexico, Mongolia, South Korea and the United States
AuthorsAhn, T., Balafoutas, L., Batsaikhan, M., Campos-Ortiz, F., Putterman, L. and Sutter, M.
Abstract

Secure property rights result from a combination of public enforcement, private protective measures, and voluntary norm-compliance. We conduct a laboratory experiment to study how culture interacts with institutions in shaping individuals' behaviors and group outcomes in a property rights dilemma. The experiment is conducted in five countries: Austria, Mexico, Mongolia, South Korea and the United States. We find that the security of property varies with the experimentally available institutions and country-level indicators such as trust and quality of government. Subjects from countries with higher levels of trust are more likely to abstain initially from theft, devote more resources to production and support funding public protection of property through taxation. Our findings highlight the relevance of cultural and institutional factors, and their interaction, in addressing the collective action problem of safeguarding property rights.

KeywordsProperty rights; Institutions; Theft; Efficiency; Experiment; Social dilemma; Trust; Norms
Sustainable Development Goals16 Peace, justice and strong institutions
Middlesex University ThemeCreativity, Culture & Enterprise
LanguageEnglish
PublisherElsevier
JournalJournal of Public Economics
ISSN0047-2727
Electronic1879-2316
Publication dates
Online01 Sep 2016
PrintNov 2016
Publication process dates
Accepted31 Aug 2016
Submitted17 Jun 2015
Deposited25 Jan 2024
Output statusPublished
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpubeco.2016.08.015
Web of Science identifierWOS:000386407800010
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