The Collective Action Problem

Date

2015

Authors

Goodin, Robert

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title

Publisher

Oxford University Press

Abstract

A classic collective action problem has the following structure. Each actor would be better off if everyone were to perform a certain action. But each actor would be even better off than that if everyone except her were to perform that action. Each one of them is thus tempted to let the others perform the action, while not doing so oneself. Yet each of the others, being identically situated, does the same. So no one ends up doing it at all. The tragedy lies in the fact that there is an outcome that would have been better for all concerned, if only they could have organised to act collectively in pursuit of it; but that outcome is virtually impossible to obtain through uncoordinated private action.

Description

Keywords

Citation

Source

Type

Book chapter

Book Title

Fair Resource Allocation and Rationing at the Bedside

Entity type

Access Statement

Open Access

License Rights

DOI

.1093/acprof:oso/9780199989447.003.0013

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