Aug 01, 2016
With S. Nageeb Ali and David Yilin Yang
Abstract: In multilateral enforcement, a player who cheats on one partner is punished by many partners. But renegotiation might subvert the threat of multilateral punishment. We consider renegotiation proofness in multilateral enforcement games with public monitoring, and also introduce the notion of “bilateral renegotiation proofness” for games with private monitoring. With public monitoring, renegotiation proofness does not impede multilateral enforcement at all; even with private monitoring, bilateral renegotiation imposes no cost when a principal interacts with many agents who can communicate with each other. For community enforcement games with private monitoring, players’ ability to renegotiate bilaterally has some cost, but this cost is relatively small in large communities.
Working paper 7/31/2016
Apr 21, 2016
With Heidi Gjertsen, Theodore Groves, Eduard Niesten, Dale Squires, and Joel Watson
Abstract: We examine the structure and performance of conservation agreements, which are used across the world to protect natural resources. Key elements of these agreements are: (1) they are ongoing arrangements between a local community and an outside party, typically a non-governmental organization (NGO); (2) they feature payments in exchange for conservation services; (3) the prospects for success depend on the NGO engaging in costly monitoring to detect whether the community is foregoing short-term gains to protect the resource; (4) lacking a strong external enforcement system, they rely on self-enforcement; and (5) the parties have the opportunity to renegotiate at any time. We provide a novel model that contains these ingredients and we apply the model to assess the workings of real conservation agreements, using three case studies as representative examples. We characterize equilibrium play (including how punishments and rewards are structured) and we show how the parties' relative bargaining powers affect their ability to sustain cooperation over time. The model captures important features of real conservation agreements and identifies some of the features required for successful agreements.
Working paper 4/21/2016