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Social and Moral Norms in the Laboratory

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  • Charness, Gary
  • Schram, Arthur

Abstract

Social norms involve observation by others and external sanctions for violations,while moral norms involve introspection and internal sanctions. We develop a simple model ofindividual preferences that incorporates moral and social norms. We then examine dictatorchoices, where we create a shared understanding by providing advice from peers with nofinancial payoff at stake. We vary whether advice is given, as well as whether choices are madepublic. This design allows us to explicitly separate the effects of moral and social norms. Wefind that choices are in fact affected by a combination of observability and the sharedunderstanding.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara in its series University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series with number qt6rv7x0tf.

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Date of creation: 05 Feb 2012
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Handle: RePEc:cdl:ucsbec:qt6rv7x0tf

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Keywords: Social and Behavioral Sciences; experiment; social norms; moral norms; individual preferences; dictator choices;

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  1. James Andreoni, 2007. "Social Image and the 50-50 Norm: A Theoretical and Experimental Analysis of Audience Effects," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000001459, UCLA Department of Economics.
  2. Lucas C. Coffman, 2011. "Intermediation Reduces Punishment (and Reward)," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 77-106, November.
  3. Charness, Gary & Jackson, Matthew O., 2009. "The role of responsibility in strategic risk-taking," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 69(3), pages 241-247, March.
  4. Shogren, Jason F., 1989. "Fairness in bargaining requires a context : An experimental examination of loyalty," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 319-323, December.
  5. Reuben, Ernesto & Riedl, Arno, 2009. "Enforcement of Contribution Norms in Public Good Games with Heterogeneous Populations," IZA Discussion Papers 4303, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Gary Charness & Ramón Cobo-Reyes & Natalia Jiménez, 2006. "An investment game with third-party intervention," ThE Papers 06/13, Department of Economic Theory and Economic History of the University of Granada..
  7. Gary Charness & Martin Dufwenberg, 2004. "Promises and Partnership," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000000001, UCLA Department of Economics.
  8. Ernst Fehr & Simon Gaechter, 1999. "Cooperation and Punishment in Public Goods Experiments," CESifo Working Paper Series 183, CESifo Group Munich.
  9. Assar Lindbeck & Sten Nyberg & Jšrgen W. Weibull, 1999. "Social Norms And Economic Incentives In The Welfare State," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(1), pages 1-35, February.
  10. Schotter, Andrew & Sopher, Barry, 2007. "Advice and behavior in intergenerational ultimatum games: An experimental approach," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 365-393, February.
  11. Elinor Ostrom, 2000. "Collective Action and the Evolution of Social Norms," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 137-158, Summer.
  12. Charness, Gary B & Rabin, Matthew, 2001. "Understanding Social Preferences With Simple Tests," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt0dc3k4m5, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
  13. James Konow, 2000. "Fair Shares: Accountability and Cognitive Dissonance in Allocation Decisions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 1072-1091, September.
  14. Andrew Schotter & Barry Sopher, 2006. "Trust and trustworthiness in games: An experimental study of intergenerational advice," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 9(2), pages 123-145, June.
  15. Gary Charness & Matthew Rabin, 2004. "Expressed Preferences and Behavior in Experimental Games," General Economics and Teaching 0407002, EconWPA.
  16. Andrew Schotter & Barry Sopher, 2003. "Social Learning and Coordination Conventions in Intergenerational Games: An Experimental Study," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(3), pages 498-529, June.
  17. Ernst Fehr & Urs Fischbacher, 2004. "Third-party punishment and social norms," Experimental 0409002, EconWPA.
  18. Hoffman, Elizabeth & McCabe, Kevin & Smith, Vernon L, 1996. "Social Distance and Other-Regarding Behavior in Dictator Games," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 653-60, June.
  19. Burks, Stephen V. & Krupka, Erin L., 2011. "A Multi-Method Approach to Identifying Norms and Normative Expectations within a Corporate Hierarchy: Evidence from the Financial Services Industry," IZA Discussion Papers 5818, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  20. Ananish Chaudhuri & Andrew Schotter & Barry Sopher, 2009. "Talking Ourselves to Efficiency: Coordination in Inter-Generational Minimum Effort Games with Private, Almost Common and Common Knowledge of Advice," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(534), pages 91-122, 01.
  21. Ellingsen, Tore & Johannesson, Magnus & Mollerstrom, Johanna & Munkhammar, Sara, 2012. "Social framing effects: Preferences or beliefs?," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 76(1), pages 117-130.
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