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Grow rich while you sleep: Selection in experiments with voluntary participation

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  • Pieter Gautier
  • Bas van der Klaauw

Abstract

We use data from a promotion campaign of NH-Hoteles to study self-selection of participants in a gift-exchange experiment. The promotion campaign allowed guests to pay any non negative amount of money for a stay in one of 36 hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands. The data allow us to distinguish between `regular guests', who booked prior to the announcement of the promotion campaign and guests who booked after the campaign was announced. During the promotion campaign we varied the posted price of a room that was communicated to the guests. Only the regular guests respond to the exogenous variation in the posted price and they pay substantially more on average. This different behavior cannot be explained by differences in satisfaction or observed compositional differences between both groups. We argue that the promotion campaign mainly attracted individuals who find it relatively unimportant to be viewed of as prosocial.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by The Field Experiments Website in its series Natural Field Experiments with number 00245.

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Date of creation: 2006
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Handle: RePEc:feb:natura:00245

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  1. Glenn Harrison & John List, 2004. "Field experiments," Artefactual Field Experiments 00058, The Field Experiments Website.
  2. Uri Gneezy & John A. List, 2006. "Putting Behavioral Economics to Work: Testing for Gift Exchange in Labor Markets Using Field Experiments," NBER Working Papers 12063, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Roland Bénabou & Jean Tirole, 2004. "Incentives and Prosocial Behavior," Working Papers 137, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Discussion Papers in Economics..
  4. Koszegi, Botond & Rabin, Matthew, 2004. "A Model of Reference-Dependent Preferences," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt0w82b6nm, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  5. Soetevent, Adriaan R., 2005. "Anonymity in giving in a natural context--a field experiment in 30 churches," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(11-12), pages 2301-2323, December.
  6. Fehr, Ernst & Kirchsteiger, Georg & Riedl, Arno, 1995. "Gift Exchange and Reciprocity in Competitive Experimental Markets," Economics Series 14, Institute for Advanced Studies.
  7. Ofer H. Azar, 2003. "The implications of tipping for economics and management," Others 0309002, EconWPA.
  8. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-91, March.
  9. Ruffle, Bradley J., 1998. "More Is Better, But Fair Is Fair: Tipping in Dictator and Ultimatum Games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 247-265, May.
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