ICES Occasional Brown Bag for April 30

Events, Seminars | April 24, 2015

Join us for an ICES Occasional Brown Bag Lecture, featuring Jeroen van de Ven.

Prof. van de Ven, of the University of Amsterdam, will discuss his paper (co-authored with Simin He and Theo Offerman) The Sources of the Communication Gap (abstract). The talk will take place on Thursday, April 30th, from 12:00 to 1:00pm, in room 5075 of the Metropolitan Building, Arlington campus.

Coffee and dessert will be provided.

If you plan to attend, please RSVP with Stan Tsirulnikov.

Please visit the Brown Bag Schedule to learn more about the Brown Bag series.


Face-to-face communication drastically increases cooperation rates in social dilemmas. We test which factors are the most important drivers of this communication gap. We distinguish three main categories. First, communication may decrease social distance. Second, communication may enable subjects to assess their opponent’s cooperativeness and condition their own action on that information (sorting). Third, communication allows subjects to make promises, which create commitment for subjects who do not want to break a promise. We find that communication increases cooperation by 56 percentage points. Roughly 74% of this effect can be attributed to sorting, the remaining 26% to a commitment value. We do not find evidence that social distance plays a role.

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