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Tragedy of Commons in Public Road Kharisma Baptiswan 8A DIV Accounting Matriculation Class, STAN, South Tangerang Email: kharisma.baptiswan@gmail.


Abstract Public goods casually explained as goods and services that are provided through public sector. Public road is one example of those of public goods. Yet to some extent, public road loses its characteristics as public goods due to certain factor that is tragedy of commons. This changes often cause problem for public goods users. Quick solutions are needed to overcome this problem.

Introduction Public goods can be defined in two ways, that is casually and abstractly. Public goods casually explained as goods and services that are provided through public sector (Holcombe, 1996; Heikkila, 2000; Ulbrich, 2003). But this definition cannot capture the true spirit of public goods. Mankiw (2009) describe public goods as goods that are neither excludable nor rival in consumption. Furthermore Mankiw explain these two natures as follow. Excludable means that the property of a good whereby a person can be prevented from using it. Rival in consumption means the property of a good whereby one persons use diminishes other peoples use. Goods that perfectly maintain these two natures are called public goods and it is very difficult to find examples for this kind of goods. The closest we can get is national defense. Mankiw explain that the defense of a country from foreign aggressors is a classic example of a public good. Once the country is defended, it is impossible to prevent any single person from enjoying the benefit of this defense. Moreover, when one person enjoys the benefit of national defense, he does not reduce the benefit to anyone else. Thus, national defense is neither excludable nor rival in consumption. Another example of public goods is public road. There are also some form of goods besides public goods. They are private goods, club/toll goods and common goods. Private goods are both excludable and rival in consumption. For example a krabby patty. A krabby patty is excludable because it is possible to prevent someone from eating a krabby patty. A krabby patty is rival in consumption because if one person eats a krabby patty, another person cannot eat the same thing. Most goods in the economy are private goods like krabby patties: You dont get one unless you pay for it, and once you have it, you are the only person who benefits (Mankiw, 2009).

Club goods are excludable but not rival in consumption. An example is water service. Local government provide water service to citizens who pay monthly fee for that service although water, in essence, is natural resources available to everyone. Common resources or common goods are rival in consumption but not excludable. For example, fish in the ocean are rival in consumption: When one person catches fish, there are fewer fish for the next person to catch. Yet these fish are not an excludable good because, given the vast size of an ocean, it is difficult to stop fishermen from taking fish out of it. Tragedy of Commons in Public Road In its basic form of service, public road is public good but as number of users increase and public road growth is slow, changes in public goods nature begin to start and traffic jam occurs. This phenomenon is called tragedy of commons (Garrett Hardin, 1968). Mankiw explains tragedy of the commons as a parable that illustrates why common resources are used more than is desirable from the standpoint of society as a whole. We can explain this easily using our object of choice here that is public road. At first road is available for everyone for free, free from charges and free from competition. But as national economy grows, population increase and lands are scarce, road loses its public image. Public road as public goods is shifted become common goods, in a way that it is still free of charges but it becomes rivalrous consumption. In the end it is still non excludable but rivalrous in consumption. Ulbrich (2003) has a term for this kind of goods, he calls it congestible public goods. He explain that a congestible public good is a public good that is nonrival under moderate use but becomes congested under heavy use (Ulbrich, 2003). With congestion, each additional user imposes costs on the other users (Weimer and

Vining, 1999; Hyman 2002; Bruce, 2001). Congested public goods are sometimes also called ambient public goods (Weimer and Vining, 1999). The main problem in the is traffic jam, road users would take more time to arrive at their destination. There are various solutions to this problem, effective solutions are proposed: 1. Implementing floating tariff for road users. Eric A. Morris (in Mankiw, 2009) propose unique way to implement this solution. He proposes a system to charge floating fee based on how congested the road is. If the road is in normal capacity then no tariff is charged. As users fill roads, usually at peak hours, system increases fee proportional to degree of traffic jam. In doing so will limit users from using certain crowded roads. Users will be faced with option wether to use the road or not. If users think that paid fee is worth it, then they may use the road. Morris ague that to many people, this sounds like a scheme by mustache-twirling bureaucrats and their academic apologists to fleece drivers out of their hard-earned cash. Why should drivers have to pay to use roads their tax dollars have already paid for? Wont the remaining free roads be swamped as drivers are forced off the tolled roads? Wont the working-class and poor be the victims here, as the tolled routes turn into Lexus lanes? And besides, adopting this policy would mean listening to economists, and who wants to do that? Implementing gasoline tax Mankiw (2009) proposed another policy that responds to the problem of road congestion that is the tax on gasoline. Gasoline is a complementary good to driving: An increase in the price of gasoline tends to reduce the quantity of driving demanded. Therefore, a gasoline tax reduces road congestion. A gasoline tax, however, is an imperfect solution, because it affects other decisions besides the amount of driving on


congested roads. For example, the gasoline tax discourages driving on uncongested roads, even though there is no congestion externality for these roads. Optimizing mass rapid public transportation By implementing this it also require extra effort to changes basic mentality of citizen who used to drive their private car. This last solution offers better outcomes in the future as congested road theoretically nonexistent, reduce in air pollution and many nature sustainability advantage.

There are maybe many other solutions regarding public road issues but because of limitness of this paper, these solutions are enough. Public road is a media for people to do their social and economic needs. Its characteristic as public good have made public road as dependable as ever. People need to understand that even public road is limited. Self constraint and optimization of public transport are two effective ways to reduce congestant. Self constrain reduce prestige or lifestyle that leads to overconsumerism as well as tragedy of commons and effective public transportation will generate sustainable resource. References Retrieved 1 November 2013. mons. Retrieved 1 November 2013. Donijo Robbins. 2005. Handbook of Public Sector Economics. Marcel Dekker/CRC Press LLC. N. Gregory Mankiw. 2011. Principles of Microeconomics 6th Edition. SouthWestern Cengage Learning : USA. Hardin, G. (1968-12-13). "The Tragedy of the Commons". Science (AAAS) 162 (3859) : 1243 1248.doi:10.1126/science.162.3859.1243. PMID 5699198. Retrieved 1 November 2013.