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Intention-Based Reciprocity and the Hidden Costs of Control

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  • Ferdinand von Siemens
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    Abstract

    Empirical research suggests that - rather than improving incentives - exerting control can reduce workers' performance by eroding motivation. The present paper shows that intention-based reciprocity can cause such motivational crowding-out if individuals differ in their propensity for reciprocity and preferences are private information. Not being controlled might then be considered to be kind, because not everybody reciprocates not being controlled with high effort. This argument stands in contrast to existing theoretical wisdom on motivational crowding-out that is primarily based on signaling models.

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    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2011/wp-cesifo-2011-08/cesifo1_wp3553.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 3553.

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    Date of creation: 2011
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    Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_3553

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    Related research

    Keywords: extrinsic and intrinsic motivation; crowding-out; intention-based reciprocity; incomplete information; hidden costs of control;

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    References

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    1. Dickinson, David & Villeval, Marie-Claire, 2008. "Does monitoring decrease work effort?: The complementarity between agency and crowding-out theories," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 56-76, May.
    2. Ariely, Dan & Kamenica, Emir & Prelec, Drazen, 2008. "Man's search for meaning: The case of Legos," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 67(3-4), pages 671-677, September.
    3. Doruk Iris & Luís Santos-Pinto, 2008. "Tacit Collusion under Fairness and Reciprocity," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 09.03, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP.
    4. Dirk Sliwka, 2007. "Trust as a Signal of a Social Norm and the Hidden Costs of Incentive Schemes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(3), pages 999-1012, June.
    5. von Siemens, Ferdinand A., 2009. "Bargaining under incomplete information, fairness, and the hold-up problem," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 486-494, August.
    6. Florian Englmaier & Stephen G. Leider, 2008. "Contractual and Organizational Structurewith Reciprocal Agents," CESifo Working Paper Series 2415, CESifo Group Munich.
    7. Silvia Dominguez Martinez & Randolph Sloof & Ferdinand von Siemens, 2010. "Monitoring your Friends, not your Foes: Strategic Ignorance and the Delegation of Real Authority," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 10-101/1, Tinbergen Institute.
    8. Schnedler, Wendelin & Vadovic, Radovan, 2007. "Legitimacy of Control," Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications 07-61, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim & Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim.
    9. Pierpaolo Battigalli & Martin Dufwenberg, 2007. "Guilt in Games," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(2), pages 170-176, May.
    10. Tore Ellingsen & Magnus Johannesson, 2008. "Pride and Prejudice: The Human Side of Incentive Theory," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 990-1008, June.
    11. Suvorov, Anton & van de Ven, Jeroen, 2009. "Discretionary rewards as a feedback mechanism," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 665-681, November.
    12. Frey, Bruno S & Jegen, Reto, 2001. " Motivation Crowding Theory," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(5), pages 589-611, December.
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    Cited by:
    1. Wiederhold, Simon & Riener, Gerhard, 2012. "Hidden Costs of Control in Social Groups," Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 65407, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    2. Gerhard Riener & Simon Wiederhold, 2011. "Costs of Control in Groups," Ifo Working Paper Series Ifo Working Paper No. 113, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.

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