Common Pool Resources

rucksackbulgeAI and Robotics

Dec 1, 2013 (3 years and 7 months ago)

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Common Pool Resources

Recall Thomas Malthus


1798, writes critique of Condorcet et al



Food supplies increase additively (linear)


Population increases geometrically (nonlinear)


Hardin
essentially repeats the arguments of Hobbs:


He says that education is not a solution; humans
need higher authority for coercion


The authority can be a government dictatorship
that regulates human reproduction (communist
model) or capitalist market that privatizes
ownership of all resources (Spencer’s solution)


Recall Garrett
Hardin’s

The
Tragedy of the Commons






Recall that the Iterated Prisoner’s Dilemma
suggested a solution to the dilemma:
Rapoport’s

tit
for tat

T
he first time meeting a program, cooperate

The next time, repeat what it did last time.


If T4T meets itself, they cooperate

If T4T meets defect
-
only, it only gets fooled once

If T4T meets random chooser (
eg

JOSS), it will retaliate on the
next move (often when JOSS cooperates)






Something like tit
-
for
-
tat appears to be in
cases of “reciprocal altruism”

T
he
long
-
tailed macaque
:

individuals which are groomed

are
much more likely to groom

or
support their groomers

than
monkeys that had not

groomed





Spatial prisoner’s dilemma (Martin Nowak)

Runs like cellular automaton

Spatial structure allows “islands” of cooperation to rise in sea
of defectors

Something like Nowak’s “islands of cooperation”
may explain other examples

Acorn Woodpecker:

Why don’t “
freeriders


rise in genetic

frequency? Cooperation

can be an Evolutionarily

Stable Strategy

Elinor

Orstom: cooperation as a “bottom
-
up” strategy in culture

Rivalrous

= “
subtractability


consumption by one means no one else can have it.


Excludability = keeping some people out (like those who don’t pay)

Common pool resources (CPR)

rival goods that are non
-
excludable

are
what Hardin called “the commons.” He was wrong about the tragedy: CPR tend
to be governed by self
-
organization in traditional societies.

Indigenous practices use “bottom
-
up”
strategies for common pool resources

At top Russia: centralized
government control leaves
land scarred where
the
thin topsoil has
been
exposed and degraded.


At bottom Mongolia:
indigenous practices treat
land as Common Pool
Resource,
eg

they
cooperate in large
-
scale
movements between
seasonal
pastures. Thus
the
vegetation cover is
intact and uniform.

Under what circumstances was Hardin
correct?


W
ithout effective
rules
defining
rights and duties, substantial free
-
riding in two forms is likely: overuse without concern for the negative
effects on others, and a lack of contributed resources for maintaining
and improving the CPR itself
.


“Empirical
studies show that no single type of property regime works
efficiently, fairly, and sustainably in relation to all CPRs
.”

Under what circumstances was Hardin
correct for group property?

(1)
No system for collective agreements present;

(2)
No
human investments have been made to
improve the
productivity
of the resource
system

(3)
T
he captured resource
units
become
the private
property

(4)
H
arvest large enough to
destroy
local
stock


(5)
T
he
individual owners
make decisions
independently
without

local norms

Under what circumstances was Hardin
correct?

Orstrom

cites
Berkes

et al. (2006)
on “roving bandits”

fishing fleets
that target valuable marine species in coastal
waters, deplete
local
stocks, and then move on to exploit stocks located in other regions.

Under what circumstances was Hardin
correct?



(1)
No effective governance
system is
present;

(2)
No
human investments have been made to
improve the
productivity
of the resource system
(the ocean
)

(3)
the
resource units
(fish captured)
become the
private property
(of
the boat
owner)

(4)
harvest large enough to
destroy
local
stock
(of fish)

(5)
the
individual owners
(of
fishing
vessels)
make
decisions independently
without

local norms

Under what circumstances can self
-
organized CPR systems evolve?

1.
Memory
: those
who use reciprocity
gain
a reputation for
trustworthiness
,
which leads to increased gains for themselves and
their offspring
.

2.
Identification
: community more
likely than groups of strangers to
draw on trust, reciprocity, and reputation to develop norms that
limit use.

3.
Modern
technology
allows increasingly large
groups to monitor one
another's behavior and coordinate activities


hence phenomena
such as Open Source Software.

4.
Orstom did not foresee: modern technology also supports
anonymity, hence our vulnerability to
griefers

and spam.

Irrigation Systems in Nepal

Even
though the
concrete channels are markedly
better than
traditional
earth canals,
the
modernized
system
delivered less water, and lowered
agricultural productivity.

Allowing local control has other advantages

Participants are
less likely
to adopt
effective


rules
in regimes
that
presume
that central
authorities must make all decisions.


If
rules are imposed by outsiders without
consulting local participants, local users may
engage in a game of “cops and robbers” with
outside authorities.


Two centuries
of colonization followed by state
-
run development policy
has
produced great
resistance to externally imposed institutions.

Modern example: Lobster Fishers in Maine


1870s top
-
down control by
State
of
Maine:


Illegal
to harvest egg
-
bearing female


Fishers scrubbed the eggs
off
“berried females”
and
sold
them


Stocks of lobster declined
dangerously

Bottom
-
up Approach by Lobster Fishers
possible because


Lived
in shoreline communities for
many
generations


Deep
roots in their
communities


Local leadership


Norms
of trustworthiness and
reciprocity
via close interactions


Effective
knowledge
about
ecosystem and harvested resource

Lobster Fishers in Maine: bottom
-
up not
“more natural”


Fishers sort through their catch


Safely return lobsters below and above a defined
size,
marking tail to reduce “free
-
ride” odds


Safely return

“berried” female lobsters (eggs on their
bellies
) without feeling like
“dupes”

Challenges of Global Commons

biodiversity
, climate change,
pollution.



Scaling
-
up:

more participants = difficulty
of
organizing, agreeing on rules,
enforcing
rules
.


Cultural
diversity:

attitudes on fertility, history of
colonialism and neocolonialism, etc.


Complications of interlinked
CPRs:
“carbon
footprint” of consumption becomes increasingly
complicated with global interconnections. Better for
example to look at footprint of profits.

Challenges of Global Commons

biodiversity
, climate change,
pollution.



Accelerating rates of
change:

“learn by doing” less
possible; experiments like
geoegineering

increasingly dangerous.


Nations are not individuals:

nations can ask for
special favors in return for compliance in ways not
possible for individuals in traditional CPR.
Eg

Lani

Gunier’s

questioning of one person, one vote
rebuked.


On the positive side:
technology offers advantages


Technology in
Global Commons



1.
Modern technology allows increasingly large groups to
monitor one another's behavior and coordinate
activities


hence phenomena such as Open Source
Software.

2.
Orstom did not foresee: modern technology also
supports anonymity, hence our vulnerability to
griefers

and spam
.

3.
Orstom did foresee: modern technology helps us
monitor nature in ways that were previously
impossible