Ore Money Ore Problems: A Resource Extraction Game

Economic theories of the exploitation of depletable natural resources are built around a core model of intertemporal profit maximization that predicts that (barring unforeseen shocks) scarcity crises will not arise because forward looking resource owners will smooth extraction over time. The model that provides this result can seem opaque to students, but its intuition can be more easily grasped from experience. This paper shares a game that provides that experience. Participants play the role of mine owners who must decide how much to extract in each of two periods. In addition to showing how market pressures moderate intertemporal scarcity, the game also provides lessons about discounting, market power, information, and property rights. I provide all materials needed to play the game immediately or customize it.

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ID Label Size Mimetype Created
OBJ OBJ datastream 551.66 KiB application/pdf 2021-11-17
TN TN 2.56 KiB image/jpeg 2021-11-17