Climate Change in a Public Goods Game: Investment Decision in Mitigation versus Adaptation

EfD Discussion Paper
1 January 2009

The authors studied the potential tradeoff between countries’ investments in mitigation versus adaptation to climate change. Mitigating greenhouse gases may be a public good, but adaptation to climate change is a private good, benefiting only the country or individual.

They used a one-shot public-goods game with a stochastic term to account for probabilistic destruction, mapping the probability density function to within-group levels of mitigation, and compared low- and high-vulnerability treatments by varying the magnitude of disaster. Results showed no significant difference in mitigation level and emphasized the role of trust in enhancing cooperation.

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Publication | 4 November 2009