Whose impartiality? An experimental study of veiled stakeholders, impartial spectators and ideal observers
AbstractThis article defines in a precise manner three different mechanisms to achieve impartiality in distributive justice and studies them experimentally. We consider a first-person procedure, the Rawlsian veil of ignorance, and two third-party procedures, the impartial spectator and the ideal observer. As a result, we find striking differences in the chosen outcome distributions by the three methods. Ideal observers that do not have a stake in the allocation problem nor information about their position in society propose significantly more egalitarian distributions than veiled stakeholders or impartial spectators. Risk preferences seem to explain why participants that have a stake in the final allocation propose less egalitarian distributions. Impartial spectators that are informed about their position in society tend to favor stakeholders holding the same position.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Max-Planck-Institute of Economics in its series Jena Economic Research Papers with number 2010-040.
Date of creation: 23 Jun 2010
Date of revision:
impartiality; veil of ignorance; impartial spectator; distributive justice;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
- C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
- D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
- A13 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Social Values
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2010-07-03 (All new papers)
- NEP-CBE-2010-07-03 (Cognitive & Behavioural Economics)
- NEP-CDM-2010-07-03 (Collective Decision-Making)
- NEP-EXP-2010-07-03 (Experimental Economics)
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- Möllerström, Johanna & Reme, Bjørn-Atle & Sørensen, Erik Ø., 2014.
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- Möllerström, Johanna & Reme, Bjørn-Atle & Sørensen, Eric Ø., 2014. "Luck, Choice and Responsibility: An Experimental Study of Fairness Views," Working Paper Series 1014, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
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