Corporate and Consumer Social Responsibilities: Label Regulations in the Lab
AbstractAlthough consumer attitudes toward corporate social responsibility are positive, socially responsible (SR) products are far from gaining significant market shares. Information asymmetries have been identified as one of the factor contributing to this attitude-behaviour gap, because social responsibility is a credence attribute. Signalling may remedy this market failure. We use an experimental posted offer market to investigate the impact of various regulatory requirements for labels on sellers’ choice to supply SR products and to signal it, and on buyers’ choice of ethical quality. Three treatments are tested: label certification by a third-party, “cheap-talk signalling” with random monitoring and with or without reputations. Individual social preferences are elicited prior to the game, and their distribution generates a positive supply of and demand for social responsibility. When there is third-party certification or cheap-talk signalling with random monitoring and reputations, a separating equilibrium emerges, whereby labelled and non-labelled goods are exchanged at different prices. However, efficiency gains are significant only for third-party certification. Cheap-talk signalling with random monitoring but without reputations does not yield efficiency gains. Moreover, it generates a “halo” effect, whereby buyers are misguided by sellers’ claims about product quality. Finally, individual social preferences have a significant effect on players’ decisions. Only third-party certification can increase companies’ social responsibility and can allow consumers to express their social preferences through consumption.
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 InfoPaper provided by European Association of Agricultural Economists in its series 2011 International Congress, August 30-September 2, 2011, Zurich, Switzerland with number 120399.
Date of creation: 2011
Date of revision:
labels; social responsibility; social preferences; separating equilibrium; market game; Consumer/Household Economics; Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety; Marketing; C92; D82; L15; M14;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
- D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
- L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
- M14 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting - - Business Administration - - - Corporate Culture; Diversity; Social Responsibility
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2012-02-20 (All new papers)
- NEP-EXP-2012-02-20 (Experimental Economics)
- NEP-MKT-2012-02-20 (Marketing)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Cason, Timothy N. & Gangadharan, Lata, 2002.
"Environmental Labeling and Incomplete Consumer Information in Laboratory Markets,"
Journal of Environmental Economics and Management,
Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 113-134, January.
- Cason, T.N. & Gangadharan, L., 1999. "Environmental Labeling and Incomplete Consumer Information in Laboratory Markets," Department of Economics - Working Papers Series 708, The University of Melbourne.
- Julian Rode & Robin Hogarth & Marc Le Menestrel, 2004.
"Ethical differentiation and market behavior: An experimental approach,"
Economics Working Papers
779, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised May 2006.
- Rode, Julian & Hogarth, Robin M. & Le Menestrel, Marc, 2008. "Ethical differentiation and market behavior: An experimental approach," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 66(2), pages 265-280, May.
- Julian Rode & Robin M. Hogarth & Marc Le Menestrel, 2005. "Ethical differentiation and market behavior: An experimental approach," Working Papers 112, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
- Krause, M. & Kroger, S. & Potters, J.J.M., 2004.
"Insights from experimental economics for market regulation,"
Open Access publications from Tilburg University
urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-145952, Tilburg University.
- M. Krause & S. Kröger & J. Potters, 2004. "Insights from Experimental Economics for Market Regulation," Review of Business and Economics, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Faculteit Economie en Bedrijfswetenschappen, vol. 0(2), pages 217-238.
- Ben Greiner, 2004. "The Online Recruitment System ORSEE 2.0 - A Guide for the Organization of Experiments in Economics," Working Paper Series in Economics 10, University of Cologne, Department of Economics.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (AgEcon Search).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.