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Tragedy of the Commons

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PPGPortal > Home > Concept Dictionary > T, U, V > Tragedy of the Commons
 
Tragedy of the Commons


Well-known problem of inefficiency caused by poorly-defined property rights.

(Benjamin, Dwayne. Class Lecture.  PPG 1002H Microeconomics for Policy Analysis, University of Toronto School of Public Policy and Governance, 2008.)

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In this type of externality, there is no formal mechanism to exclude consumption of a common good or property, which can result in inefficiency through its overuse. Examples include cows and grazing (common pastures), traffic congestion and over-fishing. 
     

Tragedy of the Commons

Well-known problem of inefficiency caused by poorly-defined property rights.

(Benjamin, Dwayne. Class Lecture.  PPG 1002H Microeconomics for Policy Analysis, University of Toronto School of Public Policy and Governance, 2008.)

---------------------------------

In this type of externality, there is no formal mechanism to exclude consumption of a common good or property, which can result in inefficiency through its overuse. Examples include cows and grazing (common pastures), traffic congestion and over-fishing. 

Approved for glossaryposting by Ben Eisen on February 27, 2011


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