Common fate, crisis, and cooperation in social dilemmas

Altruism and Prosocial Behavior in Groups

ISBN: 978-1-84855-572-3, eISBN: 978-1-84855-573-0

ISSN: 0882-6145

Publication date: 23 September 2009


Social dilemmas take many forms but all share the property that individual benefits, at least in the short run, conflict with group benefits. This chapter examines how information about the characteristics of group members and the parameters of the dilemma affect decision-making. Particular attention is paid to transformative crises, sudden changes in the dilemma setting that for a short period of time lead to incomplete information. It is posited that these crises cause relatively dramatic shifts in the importance of information.


Sell, J. and Love, T.P. (2009), "Common fate, crisis, and cooperation in social dilemmas", Thye, S.R. and Lawler, E.J. (Ed.) Altruism and Prosocial Behavior in Groups (Advances in Group Processes, Vol. 26), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 53-79.

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