Marco Casari

Marco Casari
University of Bologna | UNIBO · Department of Economics DSE

Ph.D.

About

97
Publications
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1,552
Citations

Publications

Publications (97)
Article
Climate engineering—the deliberate large-scale manipulation of the Earth’s climate system—is a set of technologies for reducing climate-change impacts and risks. It is controversial and raises novel governance challenges [T. C. Schelling, Climatic Change , 33, 303–307 (1996); J. Virgoe, Climatic Change , 95, 103–119 (2008)]. We focus on the strateg...
Article
Climate change is considered to be one of the most significant and complex challenges facing the world in the twenty-first century. As such, it is essential to increase the knowledge base regarding climate change and how best to address its impacts through efficient policies. This special issue, which is divided into two parts – published in the pr...
Article
Climate change is one of the most significant and complex challenges facing the world's economies. The necessity to enlarge the knowledge base regarding climate change and its impacts and to design efficient policies is widely accepted by the scientific community, the decision makers and the general public. This special issue, which will be publish...
Article
Human societies prosper when their members move beyond local exchange and cooperate with outsiders in the creation of wealth. Collaboration of this type presents formidable challenges because interaction is impersonal, reciprocity is unfeasible and trust cannot be easily established. Here we study this cooperation problem by modeling strategic inte...
Article
Does property rights allocation on the commons affect marriage strategies and fertility? We focus on the role played by patrilineal vs. egalitarian inheritance systems. Our approach combines a theoretical model and an empirical study that exploits an institutional shock at the turn of the 19th century, which made inheritance on the common property-...
Article
Impersonal exchange is the hallmark of an advanced society and money is one key institution that supports it. Economic theory regards money as a crude arrangement for monitoring counterparts’ past conduct. If so, then a public record of past actions—or memory—should supersede the function performed by money. This intriguing theoretical postulate re...
Article
Full-text available
Migration may cause not only a brain drain but also a civicness drain, leading to an uncivicness trap. We study this possibility using college choices of southern-Italian students classified as Civic if not cheating in a die-roll experiment. Local civicness is the fraction of Civic in their high-school class. A civicness drain is observed at high a...
Article
Greenhouse gases generate impacts that can last longer than human civilization itself. Such persistence may affect the behavioral ability to cooperate. In a laboratory experiment, we study mitigation efforts with dynamic externalities in a framework that reflects key features of climate change. In treatments with persistence, pollution cumulates an...
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Full-text available
We show that monetary exchange facilitates the transition from small to large-scale economic interactions. In an experiment, subjects chose to play an “intertemporal cooperation game” either in partnerships or in groups of strangers where payoffs could be higher. Theoretically, a norm of mutual support is sufficient to maximize efficiency through l...
Article
The sharp gap in development between the North and the South of Italy represents a paradigmatic case of persistent within‐country disparities. The evidence suggests that this gap could depend on a difference in the ability to cooperate. We investigate experimentally three possible sources of this difference, and find that Northerners and Southerner...
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Full-text available
Cooperation becomes more difficult as a group becomes larger, but it is unclear where it will break down. Here, we study group size within well-functioning social-ecological systems. We consider centuries-old evidence from hundreds of communities in the Alps that harvested common property resources. Results show that the average group size remained...
Article
Understanding how to sustain cooperation in the climate change global dilemma is crucial to mitigate its harmful consequences. Damages from climate change typically occur after long delays and can take the form of more frequent realizations of extreme and random events. These features generate a decoupling between emissions and their damages, which...
Article
Does monitoring past conduct facilitate intertemporal cooperation? We designed an experiment characterized by strategic uncertainty and multiple equilibria where coordinating on the efficient outcome is a challenge. Participants, interacting anonymously in a group, could pay a cost either to obtain information about their counterparts, or to create...
Article
We study auctions under different entry rules. In the field, individuals self-select into auctions and regulations often require them to meet specific qualifications. In this experiment we assess the role of voluntary entry and financial requirements on the incidence of severe overbidding and bankruptcies, which are widespread in common value aucti...
Article
Starting from the Medieval period, women in the Italian Alps experienced a progressive erosion in property rights over the commons. We collected documents about the evolution of inheritance regulations on collective land issued by hundreds of villages over a period of six centuries (thirteenth-nineteenth). Based on this original dataset, we provide...
Article
Contract enforcement does not only affect single transactions but the market as a whole. We compare alternative institutions that allocate enforcement rights to the different parties to a credit transaction: either lenders, borrowers, or judges. Despite all parties having incentives to enforce and transact, the market flourishes or disappears depen...
Article
Greenhouse gases generate impacts that can last longer than human civilization itself. Such persistence may affect the behavioral ability to cooperate. Here we study mitigation efforts within a framework that reflects key features of climate change and then contrasts a dynamic versus a static setting. In a treatment with persistence, the pollution...
Article
This study reveals the existence of a causal link between the availability of money and an expanded scale of interaction. We constructed an experiment where participants chose the group size, either a low-value partnership or a high-value group of strangers, and then faced an intertemporal cooperative task. Theoretically, a monetary system was ines...
Article
It is still an open question when groups perform better than individuals in intellective tasks. We report that in an Acquiring a Company game, what prevailed when there was disagreement among group members was the median proposal and not the best proposal. This aggregation rule explains why groups underperformed with respect to a “truth wins” bench...
Article
We present the first lab-in-the field experiment on the Italian North-South divide. Using a representative sample of the population, we measure whether regional disparities in ability to cooperate emerge even if differences in geography, institutions, and criminal intrusion are silenced. We report that a behavioural gap in cooperation exists: North...
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Full-text available
We study the relationship between pro-social preferences and strategic reasoning. These aspects are typically studied separately but little is known about their joint distribution. In an experiment, for each participant we elicit individual concerns toward pro-sociality - inequality aversion and efficiency - as well as the number of steps of reason...
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Full-text available
We study intertemporal choices through an experiment run over multiple dates and we show that intertemporal behavior is affected by additional drivers beyond impatience and present-biased preferences. By eliciting a subject’s plan and tracking its implementation over time, this dynamic design helps our understanding of time inconsistency through th...
Article
Does monitoring past conduct facilitate intertemporal cooperation? We designed an experiment characterized by strategic uncertainty and multiple equilibria where coordinating on the efficient outcome is a challenge. Participants, interacting anonymously in a group, could pay a cost either to obtain information about their counterparts, or to create...
Article
Norms of cooperation and punishment differ across societies, but also within a single society. In an experiment with two subject pools sharing the same geographical and cultural origins, we show that opportunities for peer punishment increase cooperation among students but not in the general population. In previous studies, punishment magnified the...
Article
We study the behavioral underpinnings of adopting cash versus electronic payments in retail transactions. A novel theoretical and experimental framework is developed to primarily assess the impact of sellers’ service fees and buyers’ rewards from using electronic payments. Buyers and sellers face a coordination problem, independently choosing a pay...
Article
We study the behavioral underpinnings of adopting cash versus electronic payments in retail transactions. A novel theoretical and experimental framework is developed to primarily assess the impact of sellers’ service fees and buyers’ rewards from using electronic payments. Buyers and sellers face a coordination problem, independently choosing a pay...
Article
Impersonal exchange is the hallmark of an advanced society. One key institution for impersonal exchange is money, which economic theory considers just a primitive arrangement for monitoring past conduct in society. If so, then a public record of past actions—or memory—supersedes the function performed by money. This intriguing theoretical postulate...
Article
Impersonal exchange is the hallmark of an advanced society and money is one key institution that supports it. Economic theory regards money as a crude arrangement for monitoring counterparts’ past conduct. If so, then a public record of past actions—or memory—should supersede the function performed by money. This intriguing theoretical postulate re...
Data
Norms of cooperation and punishment differ across societies, but also within a single society. In an experiment with two subject pools sharing the same geographical and cultural origins, we show that opportunities for peer punishment increase cooperation among students but not in the general population. In previous studies, punishment magnified the...
Article
Full-text available
What makes money essential for the functioning of modern society? Through an experiment, we present evidence for the existence of a relevant behavioral dimension in addition to the standard theoretical arguments. Subjects faced repeated opportunities to help an anonymous counterpart who changed over time. Cooperation required trusting that help giv...
Article
Decentralized and impersonal exchange is fundamental to contemporary economies, where many interactions take place among individuals with low levels of information about their counterpart. We review the experimental literature about markets with frictions, where strangers interact in pairs formed at random in economies of indefinite duration. We fo...
Article
Socio-economic performance differs not only across countries but within countries too and can persist even after religion, language, and formal institutions are long shared. One interpretation of these disparities is that successful regions are characterized by higher levels of trust, and, more generally, of cooperation. Here we study a classic cas...
Article
In an experiment, a group of strangers was randomly divided in pairs to play a prisoners’ dilemma; this process was indefinitely repeated. Cooperation did not increase when subjects could send public messages amounting to binding promises of future play.
Article
When subjects interact in continuous time, their ability to cooperate may dramatically increase. In an experiment, we study the impact of different time horizons on cooperation in (quasi) continuous time prisoner's dilemmas. We find that cooperation levels are similar or higher when the horizon is deterministic rather than stochastic. Moreover, a d...
Article
Starting from the medieval period, women in the Italian Alps experienced a progressive erosion in property rights over the commons. We collected documents about the evolution of inheritance regulations on collective land issued by hundreds of peasant communities over a period of six centuries (13th-19th). Based on this original dataset, we provide...
Article
We study cooperation in economies of indefinite duration. Participants faced a sequence of prisonerʼs dilemmas with anonymous opponents. We identify and characterize the strategies employed at the individual level. We report that (i) grim trigger does not describe well individual play and there is wide heterogeneity in strategies; (ii) systematic...
Article
We study individual behavior of students and workers in an experiment where they repeatedly faced with the same cooperative task. The data show that clerical workers differ from college students in overall cooperation rates, strategies adopted, and use of punishment opportunities. Students cooperate more than workers, and cooperation increases in b...
Article
Full-text available
Social life offers innumerable instances in which trust relations involve multiple agents. In an experiment, we study a new setting called Collective Trust Game where there are multiple trustees, who may have an incentive to coordinate their actions. Trustworthiness has also a strategic motivation, and the trusters' decision depends upon their beli...
Article
It is still an open question when groups perform better than individuals in intellectual tasks. We report that in a company takeover experiment, groups placed better bids than individuals and substantially reduced the winner’s curse. This improvement was mostly due to peer pressure over the minority opinion and to learning. Learning took place from...
Article
This paper studies how groups resolve disagreement in lottery choices. In an experiment, subjects submit individual proposals, exchange chat messages, and must reach unanimity. Overall, group choices are more coherent and closer to risk neutrality than individuals’. The proposal of the minority prevails in about one instance out of five. About one...
Article
Full-text available
The claims about (1) the lack of empirical support for a model of strong reciprocation and (2) the irrelevant empirical role of costly punishment to support cooperation in the field need qualifications. The interpretation of field evidence is not straightforward, and other-regarding preferences are also likely to play a role in the field.
Article
Through an experiment, we investigate how the level of rationality relates to concerns for equality and efficiency. Subjects perform dictator games and a guessing game. More rational subjects are not more frequently of the self-regarding type. When performing a comparison within the same degree of rationality, self-regarding subjects show more stra...
Article
When subjects interact in continuous time, their ability to cooperate may dramatically increase. In an experiment, we study the impact of different time horizons on cooperation in (quasi) continuous time prisoner's dilemmas. We find that cooperation levels are similar or higher when the horizon is deterministic rather than stochastic.Moreover, a de...
Article
We study time preferences in a real-effort experiment with a one-month horizon. We report that two thirds of choices suggest negative time preferences. Moreover, choice reversal over time is common even if temptation plays no role. We propose and measure three distinct concepts of choice reversal over time to study time consistency. This evidence c...
Article
It is still an open question when groups will perform better than individuals in intellectual tasks. We report that in a company takeover experiment, groups placed better bids than individuals and substantially reduced the winner’s curse. This improvement was mostly due to peer pressure over the minority opinion and to group learning. Learning took...
Article
Survey data show that subjects positively discount both gains and losses but discount gains more heavily than losses. This holds for monetary and non-monetary outcomes. These results do not confirm the findings of two earlier studies about negative time preferences for non-monetary outcomes.
Article
A new behavioral foundation is uncovered for why money promotes impersonal exchange. In an experiment, subjects could cooperate by intertemporally exchanging goods with anonymous opponents met at random. Indefinite repetition supported multiple equilibria, from full defection to the efficient outcome. Introducing the possibility to hold and exchang...
Article
Social norms of cooperation are studied under several forms of communication. In an experiment, strangers could make public statements before playing a prisoner’s dilemma. The interaction was repeated indefinitely, which generated multiple equilibria. Communication could be used as a tool to either signal intentions to coordinate on Pareto-superior...
Article
Full-text available
We study cooperation in four-person economies of indefinite duration. Subjects interact anonymously playing a prisoner’s dilemma. We identify and characterize the strategies employed at the aggregate and at the individual level. We find that (i) grim trigger well describes aggregate play, but not individual play; (ii) individual behavior is persist...
Article
Survey data show that subjects positively discount both gains and losses but discount gains more heavily than losses. This holds for monetary and non-monetary outcomes
Article
In a trust game experiment, we elicited choices using either the so-called game or strategy method. While the two methods yield similar rates of trust, the strategy method reveals a significantly lower rate of trustworthiness.
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Full-text available
We study the emergence of norms of cooperation in experimental economies populated by strangers interacting indefinitely. Can these economies achieve full efficiency even without formal enforcement institutions? Which institutions for monitoring and enforcement facilitate cooperation? Finally, what classes of strategies do subjects employ? We find...
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An agent with dynamically inconsistent preferences may deviate from her plan of action as the future draws near. An exponential discounter may do exactly the same when facing an uncertain future. Through an experiment we compare preference-based vs. uncertainty-based explanations for choice reversal over time by eliciting choices for pre-commitment...
Article
Full-text available
In an experiment, we studied how small groups tackle a company takeover game, a task where participants deciding in isolation frequently exhibit the winner’s curse. We found that groups of three members, who could exchange opinions and chat, substantially reduced the winner's curse and generally placed better bids than individuals. We report that r...
Article
Full-text available
A key question about human societies is how social norms of cooperation are enforced. Subjects who violate norms are often targeted by their peers for punishment. In an experiment we examine what motivates punishers. The goal is to understand whether punishers view enforcement as a second-order public good or punish for other reasons. Results sugge...
Article
We explore the effect of the limited ability to process information on the convergence of firms toward equilibrium. In the context of a Cournot oligopoly with a unique and symmetric Nash equilibrium, firms are modeled as adaptive economic agents through a genetic algorithm. Computational experiments show that while market production is close to equ...
Article
Explicit contracts are used most frequently by theorists to model many relationships, ranging from labor markets to investment projects. Experimental evidence has accumulated recently highlighting the limitations of formal and explicit contracts in certain situations, and has documented environments in which informal and implicit contracts are more...
Article
In an experiment we study market outcomes under alternative incentive structures for third-party enforcers. Our transactions resemble an anonymous credit market where lenders can give loans and borrowers can repay them. When borrowers default, judges are free to enforce repayment but are themselves paid differently in each of three treatments. Firs...
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Full-text available
Punishing the free-riders of a team can promote group efficiency but could be rather costly for the punisher. For this reason, economists see punishment as a second-order public good. In an experiment, we show that subjects do not value punishment for of its deterrence but instead for the satisfaction of personally carrying it out. Punishment choic...
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Full-text available
This article examines changes in institutions that protected property rights in the Alps between the thirteenth and the nineteenth century and, in particular, alternative management systems adopted for the common pastures and forests in about 200 communities. Over time, private-order institutions in the form of charters replaced informal arrangemen...
Article
Inexperienced women, along with economics and business majors, are much more susceptible to the winner's curse, as are subjects with lower SAT/ACT scores. There are strong selection effects in bid function estimates for inexperienced and experienced subjects due to bankruptcies and bidders who have lower earnings returning less frequently as experi...
Article
Corruption in the public sector erodes tax compliance and leads to higher tax evasion. Moreover, corrupt public officials abuse their public power to extort bribes from the private agents. In both types of interaction with the public sector, the private agents are bound to face uncertainty with respect to their disposable incomes. To analyse effect...
Article
Full-text available
Punishing the free-riders of a team can promote group efficiency but is costly for the punisher. For this reason, economists see punishment as a second-order public good. We show in an experiment that subjects do not value punishment for its deterrence but instead for the satisfaction of retaliating. Punishment choices are made with little strategi...
Article
Full-text available
This study presents experimental data on pre-commitment and flexibility where monetary rewards are delivered with an actual delay. Preference for pre-commitment is defined as willingness to pay a cost to restrict the size of the choice set available in the future. Preference for flexibility is defined as willingness to pay a cost to enlarge the cho...
Article
While peer punishment has been shown to increase group cooperation, there is open debate on how cooperative norms can emerge and on what motives drive individuals to punish. In a public good experiment we compared alternative punishment institutions and found (1) higher cooperation levels under a consensual punishment institution than under autonom...
Article
Full-text available
Some peer punishment technologies may bias experimental results in unwanted ways. A critical parameter to consider in the design is the “fine-to-fee†ratio, which measures the income reduction for the targeted subject relative to the cost for the subject who requested the punishment. We show that a punishment technology commonly used in experime...
Article
Full-text available
Corruption in the public sector erodes tax compliance and leads to higher tax evasion. Moreover, corrupt public officials abuse their public power to extort bribes from the private agents. In both types of interaction with the public sector, the private agents are bound to face uncertainty with respect to their disposable incomes. To analyse effect...
Article
Full-text available
Recoveries after recent earthquakes in the U.S. and Japan have shown that large welfare gains can be achieved by reshaping current emergency plans as incentive-compatible contracts. We apply tools from the mechanisms design literature to show ways to integrate economic incentives into the management of natural disasters and discuss issues related t...
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Full-text available
In experimental data, it is common to find persistent oscillations in the aggregate outcomes and high levels of heterogeneity in individual behavior. Furthermore, it is not unusual to find significant deviations from aggregate Nash equilibrium predictions. In this paper, we employ an evolutionary model with boundedly rational agents to explain thes...
Article
For centuries, villages in the Alps employed a special system for managing their common properties. Individual users could inspect other users at their own cost and impose a predetermined sanction (a fine) when a free rider was discovered. The fine was paid to the user who found a violator. Experiments with the institutions demonstrate that this m...
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Full-text available
[eng] This paper explores the theoretical options and the main orientations of the � competing technologies � model of B. Arthur and P. David. Under increasing returns, competition between n technologies can lock-in in to monopoly of one of the n technologies. The model shows also that each technology has positive probability of dominating. Thus th...
Article
Common-pool resources create a well known social dilemma, and to solve the problem the recent literature in economics has focused on how repeated interaction can promote informal cooperation without the need for formal legal or political institutions. This paper examines a particular example of a common resource: common property in alpine communiti...
Article
This report summarizes the progress made in the first year of a collaborative project between researchers at Kajima and two CUREe institutions, Caltech and Stanford University. The project is part of Year 2 and Year 3 of Phase ill of the CUREe-Kajima Joint Research Program. The goal of this two-year CUREe-Kajima project is to develop quantitative m...