Common pool resources
Evaluation of ‘Fishpond’ game
Observations on fish stocks
How long did the fishpond survive?
Did you achieve the goal of catching as many fish as possible?
If the penalty option was taken: What was the impact of the possibility of penalties?
If the conference option was taken: What was the impact of the possibility of a conference?
Observations on the behaviour of fishers
How did you and other people react emotionally to developments in the game?
What triggered these emotions?
Explanations of fish stocks
How many fish could the players in the game catch without stocks ever collapsing?
Why, despite this, was the fishpond fished empty (or why was it not)?
What are the critical systemic properties of the fishpond that facilitate a collapse in stocks?
Explanations of the behaviour of the fishers and of own behaviour
What behaviours were rewarded in the game?
What was your own personal strategy when it came to deciding how many fish to catch? What goals did you pursue? What were the values (sustainability, profit/gain) guiding your actions?
Were there developments that prompted you to change your strategy? What were they, and how did you adapt your strategy?
If the penalty option was taken: Why did the penalties work (or why did they not)? Why is it worth taking part in the penalties, or why not?
If the conference option was taken: Why was the conference effective (or why was it not)?
What, for you, are the implications for the next time you play the game? Describe how you would behave if you played the game again, giving reasons for your behaviour in complete sentences.
Where do you see parallels between what happens in the game and real life?
Why are some wild animals, for example whales and tigers, under threat of extinction, while other animals such as chickens, sheep and cows are not? Explain your answer (with economic argumentation) in a few sentences.
Read the following excerpt from an article.
For Mathias Lörtscher (who chairs the CITES Animals Committee), the Red List does not represent some kind of panacea for saving threatened species, but the last resort. “An absolute ban isn’t always the best approach,” he says. This is the point that distinguishes conservationists from animal rights activists: while the latter are generally against trade of any kind, for conservationists, limited, monitored trade is a way of saving species from extinction. Lörtscher gives an example: “At first glance the kind of trophy hunting offered in parts of Africa, for example, is naturally abhorrent. But when you look at it again you see that it also gives the local population an incentive to preserve animal populations, because that way they also profit in the form of tourism.”
Why, according to Mathias Lörtscher, does a ban on trophy hunting make no sense?
Explain this situation in terms of the tragedy of the commons.
Evaluate the following suggestions from the residents for solving the problem (privatisation vs state solutions).
How would you solve the problem? Make a firm proposal.