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Free rider problem (Economics)

LC control no.sh2016002617
Topical headingFree rider problem (Economics)
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Variant(s)Free riding (Economics)
Public goods problem (Economics)
See alsoEconomics
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Public goods
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Willingness to pay
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Found inWork cat.: Battaglini, M. The free rider problem, 2012.
De Jasay, A. Social contract, free ride, 2008: t.p. (a study of the public-goods problem)
Dictionary of Economics, 4th ed., 2009 (Free rider. A person or organization who benefits from a public good but neither provides it nor contributes to the cost of collective provision. They thus free ride on the efforts of others. The free-rider problem means private provision leads to undersupply of a public good. This suggests a role for the government in public good provision)
OED Online, Nov. 17, 2016 (Free-rider. Originally: a person who rides a train, bus, etc., without having paid for it (when others have). Now chiefly: a person who, or organization which, benefits (or seeks to benefit) in some way from the effort of others, without making a similar contribution. Also attrib., in free-rider problem)
Investopedia web site, Dec. 29, 2016 (Free rider problem: a market failure that occurs when people take advantage of being able to use a common resource, or collective good, without paying for it, as is the case when citizens of a country utilize public goods without paying their fair share in taxes. The free rider problem only arises in a market in which supply is not diminished by the number of people consuming it and consumption cannot be restricted. Free riding also occurs in a workplace that is partly unionized, because all of the company's employees experience wage hikes and a better working environment, regardless of whether they belong to the union)