Press "Enter" to skip to content

Increasing the Impact of Collective Incentives in Payments for Ecosystem Services

David A. Kaczan, Alexander Pfaff, Luz A. Rodriguez, Elizabeth Shapiro-Garza
Journal of Environmental Economics and Management

PDF link icon

Collective payments for ecosystem services (PES )programs make payments to groups, conditional on specified aggregate land-management outcomes.Such collective contracting may be well suited to settings with communal land tenure or decision-making. Given that collective contracting does not require costly individual-level information on outcomes, it may also facilitate conditioning on additionality (i.e., conditioning payments upon clearly improved outcomes relative to baseline). Yet collective contracting often suffers from free-riding, which undermines group outcomes and may be exacerbated or ameliorated by PES designs. We study impacts of conditioning on additionality within a number of collective PES
designs. We use a framed field-laboratory experiment with participants from a new PES program in Mexico. Because social interactions are critical within collective processes, we assess the impacts from conditioning on additionality given: (1) group participation in contract design, and (2) a group coordination mechanism. Conditioning on above-baseline outcomes raised contributions, particularly among initially lower contributors. Group participation in contract design increased impact, as did the coordination mechanism.


Comments are closed, but trackbacks and pingbacks are open.