Sunday, 5 June 2016

Try this: The Tragedy of the Bunnies

Want to better understand the tragedy of the commons? Try The Tragedy of the Bunnies - the game takes about two minutes to play, and provides a useful example of the tragedy of the commons in action. Here's how the game is described on the site:
You are a bunny merchant, and the way you make a living is to sell adorable bunnies to little children each year (you sell bunnies by clicking on them).
The "tragedy of the bunnies game is played in two rounds (two consecutive seasons). After the first round, the bunnies triple in number (they are bunnies, after all).
In the game, you compete against two other bunny merchants. Your goal is to bring the most bunnies to market that you can.
There are two versions of the game -- public bunnies, and private bunnies. After playing both versions of the game, you will understand the "tragedy of the bunnies".

[HT: This 2014 paper (ungated version here) by Brandon Sheridan (North Central College), Gail Hoyt (University of Kentucky), and Jennifer Imazeki (San Diego State University)]

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