Economic games can be used to promote cooperation in the field

Stefan Meyer, Paulo Santos, Fue Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


We present experimental evidence of the impact of playing a game on real-life cooperation. The game was framed as a pest-management activity, the effectiveness of which depends on the decisions of others. Playing the game changes behavior in the field, increasing the participation in all collective activities directed at reducing pest pressure. The economic impact of those activities is important, leading to losses that are ∼20% lower than in the control group. Increased cooperation reflects changes in the understanding of others’ willingness to cooperate, not changes in the understanding of underlying technological interdependencies.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere2026046118
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number47
Publication statusPublished - 23 Nov 2021


  • cooperation
  • pluralistic ignorance
  • framed field experiment

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