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Davide Dragone, Fabio Galeotti, Raimondello Orsini Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche

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Do cooperators cooperate?. Davide Dragone, Fabio Galeotti, Raimondello Orsini Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche 2011 Bertinoro , ESSE Summer School. Work in progress: some preliminary results.

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Do cooperators cooperate?

Davide Dragone, Fabio Galeotti, Raimondello Orsini

Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche

2011 Bertinoro, ESSE SummerSchool

work in progress some preliminary results
Work in progress: some preliminary results

A laboratoryexperimentcarried out from May 2009 toJune 2011 at LES – Forlì and BLESS – Bologna.


PRIN 2007/B8SC7A_002 - “CSR and Distributive Justice”

CFICEI - Centro di formazione e iniziativa sulla cooperazione e l'etica d’impresa

AICCON - Associazione Italiana per la Promozione della Cultura della Cooperazione e del Non-profit

motivation and benchmark
Motivation and benchmark

Are coop workersdifferentfromothertypesofworkers? Are they more “cooperative”?

Coop organizations are supposedtobeculturallydifferent and mighthave a peculiar work climate.

The labexperimentinvolves 228 subjects:

  • 84 coop workersfrom a cooperative of production and work (Formula Servizi) - 7 sessionswith 12 subjectseach;
  • 72 studentsfrom the Forlì Campus - 5 sessions;
  • 72 non coop workers(Obiettivo Lavoro) – 5 sessions.
coop definition
Coop Definition

A co-operative is an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social, and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly-owned and democratically-controlled enterprise.

coop values
Coop Values

Co-operatives are based on the values of self-help, self-responsibility, democracy, equality, equity and solidarity. In the tradition of their founders, co-operative members believe in the ethical values of honesty, openness, social responsibility and caring for others.

coop 7 principles
Coop 7 Principles
  • The co-operative principles are guidelines by which co-operatives put their values into practice.1st Principle: Voluntary and Open Membership
  • Co-operatives are voluntary organisations, open to all persons able to use their services and willing to accept the responsibilities of membership, without gender, social, racial, political or religious discrimination.
coop 7 principles1
Coop 7 Principles

2nd Principle: Democratic Member Control

Co-operatives are democratic organisations controlled by their members, who actively participate in setting their policies and making decisions. Men and women serving as elected representatives are accountable to the membership. In primary co-operatives members have equal voting rights (one member, one vote) and co-operatives at other levels are also organised in a democratic manner.

coop 7 principles2
Coop 7 Principles

3rd Principle: Member Economic Participation Members contribute equitably to, and democratically control, the capital of their co-operative. At least part of that capital is usually the common property of the co-operative. Members usually receive limited compensation, if any, on capital subscribed as a condition of membership. Members allocate surpluses for any or all of the following purposes: developing their co-operative, possibly by setting up reserves, part of which at least would be indivisible; benefiting members in proportion to their transactions with the co-operative; and supporting other activities.

coop 7 principles3
Coop 7 Principles

4th Principle: Autonomy and Independence

Co-operatives are autonomous, self-help organisations controlled by their members. If they enter to agreements with other organisations, including governments, or raise capital from external sources, they do so on terms that ensure democratic control by their members and maintain their co-operative autonomy.

coop 7 principles4
Coop 7 Principles

5th Principle: Education, Training and Information

Co-operatives provide education and training for their members, elected representatives, managers, and employees so they can contribute effectively to the development of their co-operatives. They inform the general public - particularly young people and opinion leaders - about the nature and benefits of co-operation.

coop 7 principles5
Coop 7 Principles

6th Principle: Co-operation among


Co-operatives serve their members most effectively and strengthen the co-operative movement by working together through local, national, regional and international structures.

coop 7 principles6
Coop 7 Principles

7th Principle: Concern for Community

Co-operatives work for the sustainable development of their communities through policies approved by their members.

Web: International Cooperative Alliance

lab exp students and non students
Lab exp: students and non-students
  • Experiments with students are effective and cheap/easy to set up.
  • They allow for replication and international comparability.
  • However, how much do the results extend to other social groups is questionable
main sources for the classification methods
Main sources for the classification methods

Pruitt (1967), “Reward structure and cooperation: the decomposed prisoner’s dilemma game”, J.Per.Soc.Psich.

Brosig (2002), “Identifying cooperative behavior: some experimental results in a prisoner’s dilemma game” JEBO.

Burlando-Guala (2005), “Heterogeneous agents in public good experiments”, Exp. Economics

Fischbacher – Gachter – Fehr (2001), “Are people conditionally cooperative?” Economic Letters

experimental design 7 tasks
Experimental design: 7 tasks
  • Dictator game
  • Public Good (PG) game: Strategy Method: 20 choices
  • Decomposed prisoner’s dilemma: 24 allocations
  • PG game: 12 rounds
  • PG game: 12 rounds with communication
  • PG game: 12 rounds
  • Stag Hunt (the only task with a loaded frame)

+) Questionnaire

linear pgg strategy method
Linear PGG: Strategy method

Subjects were randomly allocated to groups of four individuals to play a linear Strategy PGG with the following payoff function:

Two choices: one unconditional contribution + a ‘contribution table’. One subject per each group was randomly selected and paid accordingly to her ‘contribution table’, based on the ‘unconditional contributions’ of the other three members. The unselected players were paid accordingly to the ‘unconditional contributions’ of all the group members.

the motivational vector
The motivational vector
  • The total sum (own plus other) allocated is not constant over the 24 combinations.
  • There is no feedback concerning the other's choices. The final payoff is obtained by combining the 24 choices of each subject with those of the other player.
  • Taking the 24 vectors chosen by each subject and adding them up, it is possible to obtain the motivational vector of each subject.
main stage 3 repeated linear pgg
Main stage: 3 repeated linear PGG
  • Groups of 4 – Anonimous – Partners in stage
  • 3 sessions - 12 rounds with restart effect:
  • - new set of instructions (with emoticons);
  • - 3 practice rounds with forced input.
  • Same Linear PG Game:
  • Belief elicitation before each round
  • (prediction of average contribution, with paid incentive for accuracy).
repeated pgg standard results
Repeated PGG: standard results

Herrmann-Thoni-Gachter (2008): 16 countries analysis

pg game remarks
PG Game: remarks

While the benchmark behaves “as usual”, some peculiar facts are observed among coop workers:

  • They contribute much more on average (74% vs.56%).
  • They take advantage of a costless and simple communication technique to enhance group performance (no contribution decrease).
  • Strategy Method: non-negligible percentage of “compensators”: an example of ”we thinking”.
to do
To do
  • OUT: extensionof the samples (coop and non coop).
  • IN: Analysisof the influenceof:
  • role at work (white / bluecollar)
  • age and seniority (timespent in the cooperative)
  • gender, education, etc.
  • Linkswith SDT theory…

Positive Factorsforintrojection, identification and integration

Feeling ofcompetenceduringaction

Positive performance feedback

Internalperceived locus ofcausality: experiencebehaviouras self determined: autonomy vs control

Senseof security and relatedness

final stage stag hunt
Final stage: Stag Hunt
  • A one-shot stag hunt game with loaded frame using an in-context presentation.
  • Two workers have to decide whether to adopt or not a new work procedure. The adoption of the new procedure is costly (50 tokens) for the agent since she has to spend time and effort to learn it. If both workers learn the procedure, the work will yield 200 tokens for each worker. Otherwise the work will yield 100 tokens each.