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Dominance and Competition

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Author Info

  • Aldo Rustichini

Abstract

We propose and test two possible explanations of envy and its opposite, gloating. One explanation views them as a learning process, just as regret and rejoice are in the private domain:envy is the social correspondent of regret. The other explanation traces envy back to the natural tendency of individuals to seek higher positions in the social ranking, that is a dominant position, a tendency with very strong evolutionary motives. We show experimentally that these two functional reasons for envy coexist. Competition is the product of the desire for dominance, rather than the artificial output of social arrangements. (JEL:D12, D87) (c) 2008 by the European Economic Association.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by MIT Press in its journal Journal of the European Economic Association.

Volume (Year): 6 (2008)
Issue (Month): 2-3 (04-05)
Pages: 647-656

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:jeurec:v:6:y:2008:i:2-3:p:647-656

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Cited by:
  1. Charness, Gary & Masclet, David & Villeval, Marie Claire, 2013. "The Dark Side of Competition for Status," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt3858888w, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
  2. Boris Gershman, 2012. "The Two Sides of Envy," Working Papers 2012-19, American University, Department of Economics.
  3. C. Giannetti & R. Orsini, 2013. "Mortality Salience, Self-esteem and Status Seeking," Working Papers wp910, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
  4. David Masclet & Emmanuel Peterle & Sophie Larribeau, 2012. "Gender Differences in Competitive and Non Competitive Environments: An Experimental Evidence," Economics Working Paper Archive (University of Rennes 1 & University of Caen) 201236, Center for Research in Economics and Management (CREM), University of Rennes 1, University of Caen and CNRS.

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