On the Acceptance of Apologies
AbstractAn apology is a strong and cheap device to restore social or economic relationships that have been disturbed. In a laboratory experiment we find that harmdoers use apologies in particular if they fear punishment and when their intentions cannot be easily inferred. After offenses with ambiguous intentionality apologizers are punished less often than nonapologizers. Victims expect an apology and punish if they do not receive one. If an apology is possible, harmdoers who apologize are punished with lower probability. An apology only affects the event of punishment but not the level of punishment. An apology does not help at all after clearly intentionally committed offenses. On the contrary, after such offenses harmdoers do better not to apologize since sending an apology in this situation strongly increases punishment compared to remaining silent.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Thurgauer Wirtschaftsinstitut, Universität Konstanz in its series TWI Research Paper Series with number 53.
Date of creation: 2010
Date of revision:
Apology; Intentions; Experiment;
Other versions of this item:
- C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
- D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
- D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search, Learning, and Information
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2010-07-10 (All new papers)
- NEP-CBE-2010-07-10 (Cognitive & Behavioural Economics)
- NEP-EXP-2010-07-10 (Experimental Economics)
- NEP-SOC-2010-07-10 (Social Norms & Social Capital)
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Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
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by Miguel in Simoleon Sense on 2010-07-13 22:10:44
- Sorry seems to be the hardest word
by Kevin Denny in Geary Behaviour Centre on 2010-07-12 16:59:00
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