Dominance and Submission: Social Status Biases Economic Sanctions
AbstractSocial hierarchy is persistent in all almost all societies. Social norms and their enforcement are part of sustaining hierarchical systems. This paper combines social status and norm enforcement, by introducing status in a dictator game with third party punishment. Status is conveyed by surname; half of the third parties face dictators with a noble name and half face dictators with a common name. Receivers all have common names. We find that social status has an impact on behavior. Our results indicate that low status men are punished to a greater extent than low status women, high status men, or high status women. Interestingly, discrimination occurs only in male to male interaction. For offers below half, or almost half of the allocated resource, male third parties punish male dictators with common names almost twice as much as their noble counterparts. We find no support for female discrimination. This result suggests that social status has important implications for men’s decisions to use economic punishment, and that this holds true in situations where reputation or strategic concerns have no importance.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Stockholm University, Department of Economics in its series Research Papers in Economics with number 2011:1.
Length: 46 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2011
Date of revision: Feb 2011
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Postal: Department of Economics, Stockholm, S-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
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Status; punishment; discrimination;
Other versions of this item:
- von Essen, Emma & Ranehill, Eva, 2011. "Dominance and Submission: Social Status Biases Economic Sanctions," Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 732, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 08 Feb 2011.
- C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
- D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Economics; Underlying Principles
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2011-01-30 (All new papers)
- NEP-EVO-2011-01-30 (Evolutionary Economics)
- NEP-EXP-2011-01-30 (Experimental Economics)
- NEP-SOC-2011-01-30 (Social Norms & Social Capital)
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.:
- Holm, Hakan J., 2000. "Gender-Based Focal Points," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 292-314, August.
- Almenberg, Johan & Dreber, Anna, 2009.
"When Does The Price Affect The Taste? Results From A Wine Experiment,"
51755, American Association of Wine Economists.
- Almenberg, Johan & Dreber, Anna, 2009. "When Does the Price Affect the Taste? Results from a Wine Experiment," Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 717, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 20 Apr 2009.
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