Another Hidden Cost of Incentives: The Detrimental Effect on Norm Enforcement
AbstractMonetary incentives, such as subsidies or bonuses, are often considered as a way to foster contributions to public goods in society and firms. This paper investigates experimentally the effect of private contribution incentives in the presence of a norm enforcement mechanism. Norm enforcement through peer punishment has been shown to be effective in raising contributions by itself. We test whether and how (centrally provided) private incentives interact with (decentralized) punishment, both of which affect subjects' monetary payoffs. The results of our experiment show that private incentives for contributors can reduce the effectiveness of the norm enforcement mechanism: Free riders are punished less harshly in the treatment with incentives, and as a consequence, average contributions to the public good are no higher than without incentives. This finding ties to and extends previous research on settings in which monetary incentives may fail to have the desired effect.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by INFORMS in its journal Management Science.
Volume (Year): 56 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
public goods; prosocial behavior; norm enforcement; hidden cost of incentives; experimental economics;
Other versions of this item:
- Andreas Fuster & Stephan Meier, 2009. "Another hidden cost of incentives: the detrimental effect on norm enforcement," Working Papers 09-2, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
- Faillo, Marco & Grieco, Daniela & Zarri, Luca, 2013.
"Legitimate punishment, feedback, and the enforcement of cooperation,"
Games and Economic Behavior,
Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 271-283.
- Marco Faillo & Daniela Grieco & Luca Zarri, 2010. "Legitimate Punishment, Feedback, and the Enforcement of Cooperation," Working Papers 16/2010, University of Verona, Department of Economics.
- Thomas A. Rietz & Eric Schniter & Roman M. Sheremeta & Timothy W. Shields, 2011. "Trust, Reciprocity and Rules," Working Papers 11-06, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
- Xiaofei (Sophia) Pan & Daniel Houser, 2011.
"Social Approval, Competition and Cooperation,"
1028, George Mason University, Interdisciplinary Center for Economic Science.
- Tonin, Mirco & Vlassopoulos, Michael, 2012.
"Social Incentives Matter: Evidence from an Online Real Effort Experiment,"
IZA Discussion Papers
6716, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Tonin, Mirco & Vlassopoulos, Michael, 2012. "Social Incentives Matter: Evidence from an Online Real Effort Experiment," AICCON Working Papers 112-2012, Associazione Italiana per la Cultura della Cooperazione e del Non Profit.
- Mirco Tonin & Michael Vlassopoulos, 2013. "Social Incentives Matter: Evidence from an Online Real Effort Experiment," Working Papers 2013.05, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
- Mirco Tonin & Michael Vlassopoulos, 2012. "Social Incentives Matter: Evidence from an Online Real Effort Experiment," CEU Working Papers 2012_12, Department of Economics, Central European University, revised 20 Jul 2012.
- Samuel Ferey & Yannick Gabuthy & Nicolas Jacquemet, 2013. "L'apport de l'économie expérimentale dans l'élaboration des politiques publiques," Post-Print halshs-00879205, HAL.
- Sander Onderstal & Arthur J.C. Schram & Adriaan R. Soetevent, 2011. "Bidding to give in the Field: Door-to-Door Fundraisers had it right from the Start," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 11-070/1, Tinbergen Institute, revised 10 Nov 2011.
- Bénabou, Roland & Tirole, Jean, 2011.
"Laws and Norms,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
8663, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Matthew W. McCarter & Anya C. Samak & Roman M. Sheremeta, 2013. "Divided Loyalties or Conditional Cooperation? An experimental study of contributions to multiple public goods," Working Papers 13-08, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
- Weng, Qian & Carlsson, Fredrik, 2013. "Cooperation in teams: the role of identity, punishment and endowment distribution," Working Papers in Economics 551, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
- Xiao, Erte, 2013. "Profit-seeking punishment corrupts norm obedience," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 321-344.
- repec:dgr:uvatin:2011070 is not listed on IDEAS
- Paul Dolan & Robert Metcalfe, 2013. "Neighbors, Knowledge, and Nuggets: Two Natural Field Experiments on the Role of Incentives on Energy Conservation," CEP Discussion Papers dp1222, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mirko Janc).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.