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Conflict, private and communal property

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  • This paper develops a model where agents can create private property rights on a resource by making appropriative activities. We show that the value of the resource has a non-monotonic effect on the emergence of private property. When the resource is sufficiently valuable, agents have an incentive to leave a sharing agreement and private property can appear. However if the value of the resource increases beyond a given threshold, deviations from the sharing agreement leads to a very costly confrontation. In this case, private property is not sustainable. Our analysis also finds that population size has an important effect on the size of the parameter set in which private property is sustainable.
    Mathematics Subject Classification: 91B99, 91A12.


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