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Cooperation and Competition in Intergenerational Experiments in the Field and the Laboratory

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  • Gary Charness
  • Marie-Claire Villeval

Abstract

There is economic pressure to postpone the retirement age, but employers are still reluctant to employ older workers. We investigate the comparative behavior of juniors and seniors in experiments conducted both onsite with the employees of two large firms and in a conventional laboratory environment with students and retirees. We show that seniors are no more risk averse than juniors and are typically more cooperative; both juniors and working seniors respond strongly to competition. The implication is that it may be beneficial to define additional incentives near the end of the career to motivate and retain older workers. (JEL C90, J14, J26, M12, M51)

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 99 (2009)
Issue (Month): 3 (June)
Pages: 956-78

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:99:y:2009:i:3:p:956-78

Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.99.3.956
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Cited by:
  1. Brice Corgnet & Roberto Hernán-González & Stephen Rassenti, 2011. "Real Effort, Real Leisure and Real-time Supervision: Incentives and Peer Pressure in Virtual Organizations," Working Papers 11-05, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
  2. Kocher, Martin G. & Martinsson, Peter & Matzat, Dominik & Wollbrant, Conny, 2011. "The role of beliefs, trust, and risk in contributions to a public good," Working Papers in Economics 482, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  3. Thierry Madiès & Marie Claire Villeval & Malgorzata Wasmer, 2013. "Intergenerational Attitudes Towards Strategic Uncertainty and Competition: A Field Experiment in a Swiss Bank," Post-Print halshs-00807436, HAL.
  4. Jeffery Flory & Uri Gneezy & Kenneth Leonard & John List, 2012. "Sex, competitiveness, and investment in offspring: On the origin of preferences," Artefactual Field Experiments 00072, The Field Experiments Website.
  5. Cooper, David J. & Saral, Krista Jabs, 2010. "Entrepreneurship and Team Participation: An Experimental Study," MPRA Paper 25144, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Barmettler, Franziska & Fehr, Ernst & Zehnder, Christian, 2012. "Big experimenter is watching you! Anonymity and prosocial behavior in the laboratory," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 17-34.
  7. Luis Aranda & Martin Siyaranamual, 2014. "Are Smarter People Better Samaritans? Effect of Cognitive Abilities on Pro-Social Behaviors," Working Papers 2014:06, Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari".
  8. Luis Aranda & Martin Daniel Siyaranamual, 2014. "Are Smarter People Better Samaritans? Effect of Cognitive Abilities on Pro-Social Behaviors," Working Papers in Economics and Development Studies (WoPEDS) 201405, Department of Economics, Padjadjaran University, revised May 2014.
  9. Kato, Takao & Shu, Pian, 2011. "Competition, Group Identity, and Social Networks in the Workplace: Evidence from a Chinese Textile Firm," IZA Discussion Papers 6219, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Charness, Gary & Gneezy, Uri & Kuhn, Michael A., 2013. "Experimental methods: Extra-laboratory experiments-extending the reach of experimental economics," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 91(C), pages 93-100.

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