« Readings For Tuesday Discussion | Main | Just a sneak peak - T-3!!! »

04/23/2013

Comments

Bess Ruff

The willingness to pay–willingness to accept gap revisited: The role
of emotions and moral satisfaction

This article explores the discrepancy between WTA and WTP experiments, specifically with respect to moral perceptions and emotions. I was particularly intrigued by the idea of omission vs. commission. The paper explains that people tend to view acts of omission as less blameworthy than acts of commission. It goes on to explain that WTP is viewed as an act of omission because an individual can refrain from paying whereas WTA is an act of commission because the individual chooses to accept some form of payment. The results of this experiment show that individuals given a WTA option are more likely to donate to the WWF than those given the WTP choice. With these results in mind, I'm curious as to whether there is not framing bias in this experiment. WTA participants were given the option to keep the money or donate, but, according to the paper, there wasn't a stated amount that these individuals had to give. A WTP participant had to choose between keeping all of the money and giving 100SEK to the WWF. I imagine that if the WTP group was given a scale on which they could donate that their percentages for donating to the WWF would be larger. Since the WTA group was not given a set amount by which if they committed to donating they had to give, it gives them greater option in giving, perhaps a lesser amount than 100SEK. The experiment's examination of emotions associated with given in the context of the WTA and WTP groups, however, is very telling of the role of moral perception in donations, specifically towards the preservation of public goods.

Bess Ruff

Ecosystem services of the tropical seascape:
interactions, substitutions and restoration

The use of human substitutions and restoration methods discussed in this article provides an interesting insight into conservation decision making. The paper provides multiple examples of substitution and restoration attempts in the context of mangroves, sea grass beds, and coral reefs, and it's pretty clear that most of the efforts have fallen short. An especially striking statement made by this paper is the idea that simply putting something back, e.g. a mangrove population, does not necessarily mean the ecosystem is restored. I had not yet considered that linkages were an integral aspect of the substitution and restoration processes. With this in mind, technological substitutions and man-made restoration might be able to solve a short-term problem, but it will come at a high cost and long-term failure. This literature provides new insight into how we should approach conservation and highlights that the mere reestablishment of an ecosystem does not guarantee resiliency. While the technology to fully substitute or restore ecosystems might lie somewhere in the future, trusting that to be a viable solution is folly and an overconfidence in the human ability to manipulate nature. Substitution and restoration could potentially be used as a short-term solution to facilitate the regeneration of the natural ecosystem, but what success would there be in completely depleted areas?

Bailey Ewing

Trade-offs between conservation and socio-economic objectives in managing a tropical marine ecosystem.

This article highlights a lot of what we talked about today regarding how conservation techniques can either hurt or improve the economy and long-term sustainability of the target region. For instance, the example of limiting fishing in order to preserve oceanic ecosystems results in negative externalities within the fishing market and the economy of the region. This study focused on economic rent, the opportunity cost forgone when working in the fishing industry, maximizing social opportunity in the form of employment by calculating the number of jobs available and then these jobs were valued based on profitability. However, long term we must consider that the habitat that the studied species live in is being depleted at substantial rates if something doesn’t change. As fisheries begin to multiply, depletion of resources and lessening of biodiversity occurs. This study emulates whale shark conservation in that, increased costs for a whale shark excursion could turn away some customers and decrease demand but will allow for this activity to persist for a much longer duration of time due to the fact that the conservation fee is going to prevent whale shark extinction. It is absolutely crucial to weigh long-term consequences of conservation policies in order to evaluate the proper procedure to take. This article also points out that is not necessary to decide between harsh conservation policy and free, unregulated, use of natural resources. We must fund the intercept between the benefit curves of each alternative.

I found the buy back option and fishing fleet restructuring ideas interesting however, I had a hard time understanding what was happening. Although I might be completely wrong, I relate this idea to farming regulation and support given to farmers in America in order to both regulate and sustain the delicate, yet necessary, economic resource. I would argue that this practice would require strict regulation laws and monitoring in order to prevent illegal fishing. I wonder if this extra cost, one that I consider to be somewhat indirect, would be worth it.

Bess Ruff

Trade-offs between conservation and socio-economic
objectives in managing a tropical marine ecosystem

The central conservation of trade offs is presented starkly in this paper which focuses on the specific northern South China Sea region for its data. Even in the first two days of class, we've discussed trade-offs between conservation and socio-economic objectives. We like to believe that the people that are put out of work by fishing limitations can just become tour guides, but as we've learned, this is not necessarily the case. This paper presents the same dilemma while discussing the policy of fishing vessel/license buy-back. The intent is to restructure the fishing fleets of this region in order to achieve a Pareto-optimum outcome. The paper also refers to Malthusian overfishing as a force against conservation and suggests that training and assistance programs should be established to help former fishermen re-enter the work force. This is an imperative step for long-term conservation success because it provides economic incentives for people to change their behavior. The establishment of such programs would have a substantial upfront cost, and the return on investment might take a few years, but long-term this is a logical first-step in altering the cultural practices that pose a threat to natural resources.

Holley Beasley

Trade-offs between conservation and socio-economic objectives in managing a tropical marine ecosystem

I agree with Bailey on how important it is that we weigh the long-term consequences of conservation policies in order to choose the best path to take. The Pareto-frontier between the depletion index and the social benefits shows that improvements in conservation efforts lead to a decline in the number of jobs provided by the fisheries. However, it is also true that a lack of improvements in conservation efforts can also lead to a decline in employment, and this decline is most likely irreversible and even more devastating. The authors mention the collapse of the Atlantic cod fishery off the coast of Newfoundland, but they don't give the whole story, leaving out details that shouldn't be ignored but rather used as an example to learn from. (I happened to learn a lot of these details when I was writing a paper about the collapse in my environmental class) It is true that following the fishery collapse the populations of other species like crab and shrimp flourished. But this did not happen immediately. In the meantime, the collapse was a catastrophic blow to the community, which was both economically and culturally centered around the fishery. The Newfoundland population dropped significantly as a result of the sudden loss of jobs and the community's entire way of life was dramatically altered. This fishery collapse can be used as a learning tool on why the moderate trade-off of jobs for conservation efforts, though it may seem undesirably costly in the short run, is a much better choice in the long run.

Kate LeMasters

Ecosystem services of the tropical seascape: Interactions, Substitutions, and Restoration

I agree with Bess that this paper pinpoints the difficulties and previous failures in attempting to restore mangroves and coral reefs. She states it well; establishing an ecosystem does not guarantee resiliency. The simple technological implementation often shows short-term success but fails to predict long-term success. Because we must focus on a multifunctional ecosystem whose success is highly dependent upon surrounding areas, this presents a large roadblock for highly depleted areas.
Along these lines, what I found most startling was the grim outlook for underdeveloped and developing countries. These programs are incredibly expensive, especially for coral reefs, in the realm of funding, collaboration, employment, and shear length of projects. This drastically reduces the capability of underdeveloped, coastal economies to restore depleted ecosystems. Additionally, this will create a snowball effect as depleted ecosystems are then more vulnerable to natural disasters, and coastal communities, such as those in Southeast Asia, are hit by tsunamis and hurricanes. This further damages their economies and capability and this vicious cycle continues. Much damage to ecosystems in these areas is not caused by industrial coastal development, but subsistence fisheries and other necessary livelihoods, so deciding whom to burden the restoration of ecosystems with is a difficult question. The article correctly states that prevention gives much better results than the cure, but in underdeveloped areas, prevention may not be possible on the scale that it is in better-funded areas. That being said, we must recognize that the question of ecosystem restoration and substitution does not have a homogeneous solution for all coastal nations.

Holley Beasley

The willingness to pay-willingness to accept gap revisited: The role of emotions and moral satisfaction

This article concludes that the WTA-WTP gap is typically larger for public goods than for private goods. This does not surprise me because if you receive something for a public good you are gaining to make up for your own loss but you are not making up for the loss of others, and so you are just causing a loss to everyone else. This also proves that people are at least partially aware of the concept of a public good and how their private actions affect everyone, which is encouraging towards policies that aim to internalize the negative externalities associated with public goods.

The example of the "trolley problems" was very interesting to me. The results of each scenario could, in a way, be linked to the idea of omission vs. commission. He says that empirical evidence shows that acts of omission causing harm are perceived as less blameworthy than acts of commission that cause equal harm. So causing harm in a more indirect sense, by simply not doing anything at all, is less blameworthy than causing harm by accepting payment, and therefore being more involved and a part of the action. Switching the tracks of the trolley could be perceived like an act of omission because you're not physically involved in the killing of the one person. Indirectly you may be the cause, but you have no actual connection or relationship with the trolley that does the killing. By pushing the man if front of the trolley, on the other hand, you are physically and actively involved in the killing of the person, in the same way that you are actively involved in accepting a payment in an act of commission.

Kate LeMasters

The Willingness to Pay-Willingness to Accept Gap Revisited: The Role of Emotions and Moral Satisfaction

This article’s juxtaposition of WTP and WTA further put into perspective the discussions we had in Econ 255 about this topic. We had affirmed that WTA was usually higher than WTP, but I had never fully understood why without this argument based on emotions. I agree with Bess that the most telling part of the article was its focus on omission vs. commission. Omission is less blameworthy than commission. For this exact reason, the commission associated with WTA makes people more likely to donate.
What I found very interesting for our specific course motives was the mention of public goods vs. private goods. Because public goods often have a higher intrinsically moral obligation associated with them, I wonder how that would apply to marine environments. I would assume that the role of asymmetric information is very large in coastal environments, so although they have public goods aspects, people would operate from a private perspective. If there was no asymmetric information, people would feel more morally responsible for harm done to coastal ecosystems and would act accordingly. For policy makers, it is thus important to remember that public goods have more obvious ethical dimensions than do private goods, so appeals to emotions are very useful and will harbor significant results.

Kate LeMasters

Trade-Offs Between Conservation and Socio-Economic Objectives In Managing A Tropical Marine Ecosystem

This article’s integration of social, economic, ecosystem, and conservation factors makes it very thorough but nuanced in its description of the current issues involving managing marine ecosystems. I agree with Bailey and Holly that we must consider long-term consequences in conservation policies to decide the best path to take. However, I do not think that it is economically feasible for subsistence fishing communities and underdeveloped areas to choose policies based on only long-term goals. The discount rates for these areas are incredibly high, and the net present value of harvesting fish takes precedent over hypothetical long-term benefits. The article states this, as it emphasizes the need to retrain fishers and others that work in environmentally unsustainable industries. Bess touched on this when she mentioned our discussion in class on the difficulty in retraining fishers to become tour guides. If retraining and education is indeed feasible, then it should be enacted, but not all governments have the capability to do so, and it is ambiguous as to whether this training would occur on a large scale otherwise. When there is a lack in alternative livelihoods, mandating a decreasing in fishing is simply not feasible. Additionally, the article pointed out that we could eliminate fishing subsidies. However, as we discussed in Econ 255, eliminating subsidies for those who fish simply for nutrition for their families and basic income is neither moral nor easy to implement.
Because of these many barriers to underdeveloped areas, the article’s suggestion that public funds be raised for high conservation levels is incredibly important. These funds must be funneled into job training programs and provide a viable method of income for subsistence fishers to end overfishing and other ecologically degrading endeavors.

Corinne Hemmersbach

Trade-offs Between Conservation and Socio-Economic Objectives in Managing a Tropical Marine Ecosystem
Cheung and Sumaila’s article truly highlights the importance of understanding the trade-off relationships between ecological, economic, and social objectives in designing policies to restore ecosystems. It became very clear that a trade-off between the three is no easy task. One line that really caught my attention was on page 11 when Cheung and Sumaila wrote, “These are clear symptoms of Malthusian overfishing – a situation in which overfishing is driven by poverty, population growth, and lack of alternative livelihood.” In the NSCS, fisherman are only able to maintain their income from fishing by targeting species further down the food web and using destructive fishing methods.
I completely agree with the others that it is crucial to weigh the long-term consequences. I agree that a well-designed conservation policy to improve conservation status is needed for long term economic and ecological reasons. However, finding a way around the short-term social costs poses a huge problem for me. Establishing training and assistance programs for former fishermen is crucial as this article suggests. As we talked about in class, this step and these individuals are often overlooked when focusing on improving the ecosystem. With a low education level, these fishermen may have nothing but fishing to feed their families. As Bess points out, it is an extremely important step for long-term conservation success. Providing these fishermen with incentives to change their behavior will not only bring ecological success, but it will also bring social success.

Holley Beasley

It is hard for me to believe that this article is actually discussing the ability of technology and human capital to replace ecosystem services and restore ecosystems to their original natural state. I am not undermining the incredible things that humans can do these days, but the answer just seems obvious to me that humans are simply not capable of sufficiently replacing or reinventing a natural ecosystem. Nature is one thing that I do not think will ever lie in the complete control of humans. This kind of goes back to the aspect of human nature we discussed in 255: Humans have always strived to overcome and suppress nature to protect themselves, but now they are realizing that in order to truly improve their well being they instead need to cultivate their relationship with and protect nature. The natural world and the relationships within it are too intricate, complex, and powerful to ever replace or recreate with mere human capital or technology.

Bailey Ewing

Ecosystem services of the tropical seascape: interactions, substitutions and restoration

When first approaching the two primary questions examined by this article I formed a very strong opinion before gathering all of the facts and research. My opinion however, lined up with their conclusion and I feel as though most civilians, unknowledgeable about oceanic ecosystems and their deterioration, would be able to argue that human reconstruction could not create the perfect complexity of natural oceanic ecosystems. Although I think that if successful, technologically constructed oceanic ecosystems could, potentially, fix long-term deterioration of marine environments, I also find the research from this article sensible. Issues such as creating internal memory and other complexities could easily make an extensive and extremely costly project fail. I believe that this is a valid and reasonable proposal in order to investigate long-term fixes to substantial looming problems; however, I also believe that even if man were able to create a perfectly functional and thriving oceanic environment, the cost behind research, construction and maintenance would be a drastic burden.

Bailey Ewing

The willingness to pay-willingnes to accept gap revisited: the role of emotions and moral satisfaction

I really noticed how the WTP verses the WTA revealed the impact of an anchor. The WTP group already had the full SEK 150 while the WTA only actually possessed SEK 50. It would make sense that because they had not yet formed an attachment to the extra SEK 100 nor had they seen the physical substance, that they would be more likely to forgo the opportunity in order to help a cause. I think that this study reveals potential biases that could result from our survey. Does the way that we present information or formulate questions impact the tourist’s emotional connection to the momentary funds they must forego to have a whale shark experience. I even think this might relate back to what we discussed today about how to pose the question regarding how much they would pay for the trip, both before and after. If we asked, would you pay $150 they might be more willing to accept this $40 increase in price than if we were to give them options ranging for $110- $150. Here it seems as though paying the $150 will provide aid to the environment but essentially, it is just a fixed fee to enjoy this experience. However when given intervals, I feel as though a tourist will automatically assume: anything that I circle over what I have just paid will be a conservation fee that will come out of my pocket. In this scenario I would hypothesize that the mean willingness to pay would be lower than one we might be able to set.

Katie D'Innocenzo

Cheung and Sumaila’s article highlights one of the most important dilemas in conservation economics. While it is clear that drastic changes need to take place in order to serve ecological benefit, the short and long term economic welfare of the NSCS region is in jeopardy. As stated in the conclusion, alternative livelihoods are necessary in order to allow the possibility of sustainable fishing in the future. While short term pains such as training programs may need to be suffered, the eventual long term gains should outweigh these.
The article discussing the gap between WTA and WTP I found particularly interesting. Not surprisingly, the results from the WWF experiment showed that people tend to stick with the "norm" or what is already in place. Those within the WTA framework were more likely to donate, in my opinion, because the donation had essentially been put into place for them. Furthermore, straying from this norm is displeasing from a moral standpoint since it is seen as taking money from a charitable organization.
The final paper regarding manmade technologies as replacement for the many ecosystem services provided in tropical seascapes reminded me of discussions surrounding the land ethic developed by Aldo Leopold I had in a philosophy class last semester. Not surprisingly, the study concludes that these ecosystem services cannot be readily replaced. In our discussion of Leopold's land ethic, we talked about the inability for man to fully understand and recognize the extent of the many parts of different ecosystems. And to imagine an understanding of this so deep and correct as to replace these ecosystem services with manmade structures is simply laughable in my mind. In addition, as Bailey pointed out, the cost for such an endeavor would be astounding.

Jennifer  Friberg

**Ecosystem services of the tropical seascape: interactions, substitutions and restoration

Bailey made a great point. Even if man could find the technology to recreate a perfect environment the expenses, time, and resources necessary to develop the research and to carry out the process would be overwhelming. There would be no need to even research the technology to "fix" our degrading seascapes if we could solve the problem that is destroying them in the first place. What I took from this article is that the focus should be on researching how to get what consumers want in the market (like hotels on the beach) without causing a domino effect of destroying mangroves, seagrass, and ultimately the coral reefs. By the end of the article I felt that, although the information was incredibly convincing to the reader that technologically restoring ecosystems is less desirable than avoiding the destruction of existing natural habitats, the conclusion was something we all know too well. Clearly, if we knew of a way to not need to restore these threatened ecosystems we would but that is the struggle. Going back to the source of the problem and starting from there is key. On another note, I think the "mineral accretion technique" is fascinating. I can really appreciate the science that went behind discovering that low-voltage electrical currents increase pH levels, which leads to the precipitation of limestone from seawater ultimately resulting in an increase in the growth rate of corals.

Corinne Hemmersbach

The Willingness to Pay-Willingness to Accept Gap Revisited: The Role of Emotions and Moral Satisfaction

The disparity between people’s maximum WTP for a good and their minimum WTA not having the good is a new concept all together for me. However, I felt like this article gave me a sound base knowledge. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the WTA-WTP disparity tends to be much larger for public goods, such as environmental goods than for private commodities. The idea behind it would be that public goods are perceived to have a more obvious ethical component, since the individuals’ choices also affect others. I agree with others who have posted that this fact is very promising. It is promising that individuals are aware of how their personal decisions may affect others. I think this article is also promising in terms of analysis for future policies and donations. I believe it could give economists a better idea of the emotions or moral compass behind donations toward environmental goods and a better idea of how to act on these emotions with implementation of new conservative policies.

Corinne Hemmersbach

Ecosystem Services of the Tropical Seascape: Interactions, Substitutions, and Restoration

In this article Moberg and Ronnback presented very interesting ideas on how to substitute or restore the damage humans have done to tropical coastal “seascapes.” These attempts at substitution and restoration of ecosystem services were fascinating to me. I had never come across these ideas before, but why? For example mangrove afforestation and habitat conversion of mudflats have proven to be very successful and cost efficient, so why is it not more popular? I began to ponder these questions, and then thought to myself well why has this all happened in the first place? Why have humans continued to destroy seascapes even though they serve humans with protection, food, medicine, and many other needed services? Education is key. If humans were better educated on how destroying seascapes impact both marine ecosystems and human civilization, I believe it could eliminate some major problems. Obviously, damage has already been done. However, I believe implementation of education can seriously slow down the process in the future. While humans become more education, restoration attempts may be able to bring back the direct value to humans and ecosystem resilience. We must aim to prevent the destruction of the marine ecosystem, but enough damage has been done that restoration may be key to the success of seascapes throughout the tropics.

Shannon Marwitz

The Willingness to Pay-Willingness to Accept Gap Revisited: The Role of Emotions and Moral Satisfaction

Like Holley, I found the trolley example to be quite illustrative of the difference between omission and commission. It was easy for me to understand how the emotions associated with pushing a man in front of trolley and having to get your hands dirty would differ greatly from simply switching the tracks and achieving the same outcome. It made me think of yesterday’s article on paying for coral protection and the role that emotions had played. That businesses should bear the costs instead and that they personally not responsible for degradation were both cited as reasons for being unwilling to pay for coral protection. Both of these protest bids involve the tourists feeling detached from the problem, which explains why they feel less guilt in not paying into a fund.
I was also interested in the discussion of anonymity and how important of a role it can play in responses. Again, it made me question how some of the interviews in coral protection article were conducted with couples and whether this introduced some bias. Also, it made me think about how we plan to conduct our surveys. If we do distribute some through the dive shops, anonymity is obviously not a problem, but would respondents feel some pressure when the interviews are done in person?

Trade-offs Between Conservation and Socio-Economic Objectives in Managing a Tropical Marine Ecosystem

I agree that the long-term consequences should serve as the basis of today’s policies, and really appreciated that the paper recognized that what is best in the long-run can present some negatives in the immediate future. Another important point that I took form this was that it is necessary to look at the whole picture when trying to decide what is the best course of action. For example, when policy objectives focused mainly on conservation, the invertebrate and small fish biomass declined, which is the opposite of the aim of the policy. However, further investigation would suggest that this decline is a result of increased predation due to more predators, which was an objective. The same can be said for the collapse of the Atlantic Cod fishery – the blooming of invertebrate fisheries as a result of decreased predation does not necessarily signal a healthy ecosystem.

Ecosystem services of the tropical seascape: Interactions, Substitutions, and Restoration

I found many of the techniques proposed to aid in restoring or replacing damaged ecosystems to be fascinating, but as have others have noted was overwhelmed by the associated costs and by the uncertainty of their success. I think of how incredible and complex these systems are and the idea that humans could be able to mimic or recreate them seems pretty farfetched, and I question how we could truly measure the success of our attempts. It is clear that you could look to Table 1 and compare the provision of ecosystem services before and after; however, I think our knowledge of how nature operates is imperfect and how can we be sure that this table captures all that is being offered by the natural system?

Jennifer  Friberg

**Trade-offs between conservation and socio-economic objectives in managing a tropical marine ecosystem

In order to protect what is left of many previously diverse fisheries, and to take advantage of the generally higher WTA as compared to WTP before it is too late and we are attempting to substitute/restore entire ecosystems, this article gives great social and economic trade-offs and cost/benefit analyses in support of reducing the numbers of fishing fleets per fishery. To steer clear of fishing up until the bionomic equilibrium (BE), a reduction of fishing fleets in a fishery up to a point will have small negative effects on the economy and employment numbers and large positive effects in way of conserving the biodiversity and general health of the ecosystem in question. This point where conservation and socio-economic objectives meet at the optimal level is what is highly desired. I like how this article gives a clear focus for policy-makers to take from after reading it rather than purely giving information on previous research and not specifying what to do about it. The article mentions that the largest setback in the attempt to increase conservation efforts while minimizing economic downfall is that in many places, especially third world countries, there are not many other options in the way of employment other than fishing. Working to create markets that are not subject to the destruction of the environment or subject to the tragedy of the commons is key in making improvements in the fisheries across the world.

Emily Shu

Trade-offs between conservation and socio-economic objectives in managing a tropical marine ecosystem

The delicate balance between socio-economic and conservation objectives in marine ecosystems is an extremely current concern – especially as we look to Belize and its efforts to protect its natural resources at the expense of the local fishing economy. The article demonstrates clearly what we discussed in class – that conservation status and economic benefits from fisheries have a linear relationship. When conservation efforts are increased, there is a distinct decline in the number of jobs provided by fisheries. On the other hand, when emphasis is placed on maintaining a social objective, maximizing employment opportunities, ecological depletion increases considerably. It is clear that conservation policies are the key to maintaining long term success with both conservation and socio-economic objectives – policies that only focused on maximizing jobs led to over capitalization, over-exploitation, and ultimately, the dissipation of economic benefits. However, I agree with Corinne in that it is also important to establish policies and support for those affected in the short-run. As discussed in class, fishermen who cannot fish in Belize do not have many alternative employment options available to them. With a current unemployment rate of 11.3%, this is a growing concern that has yet to be addressed. I thought it was particularly interesting to note the psychological response of overfishing from fishermen who face limited economic opportunity.

Ecosystem services of the tropical seascape: interactions, substitutions and restoration

I think the article does a good job of outlining the various human attempts to substitute and restore mangroves and coral reefs and their subsequent limitations. Like the rest of the class, and as seen from the article, I do not believe that it is possible to replace natural phenomena with human technology. In fact, single-service substitution such as aquaculture, is harmful to the natural environment that it is dependent upon. Though I agree that rather than focusing on developing these limited technologies, as a society, we should be working on policy to keep the deterioration from happening in the first place, I also believe that restoration can be beneficial for mangroves that have already been lost. What worries me about this, however, is that the authors relate that, “most mangrove restoration work has focused only on the techniques for growing mangrove trees with little attention paid to long-term community structure or linkages with other systems.” If we try to recreate a natural ecosystem, we must understand it first – thoughtlessly planting mangroves may be ineffectual, or at worse, harmful, and is only a waste of resources.

The willingness to pay-willingness to accept gap revisited: The role of emotions and moral satisfaction

This article truly fascinated me because I had never thought about WTP in relation to WTA a public or private good. I believe that the fact that there was an emotional connection with those in the WTA group when presented with the opportunity to take back their money from a public cause and an overall greater willingness to accept the loss and go through with the donation has many implications for future conservation efforts. Like others in the class, I thought it was interesting to see how the experiment tied into the omission vs. commission thought process of the trolley scenario. There was greater guilt for those who committed the act of taking money back from WWF, whereas those who only omitted giving money, suffered less emotional stress. It would be interesting to have further experimentation continue to test whether or not investing in a public good promotes positive affect in a statistically significant manner.

The comments to this entry are closed.