Social Influence in Trustors’ Neighborhoods
AbstractEconomists have often analysed the impact that the spread of beliefs and behaviors have on the equilibrium and performance of markets. Recent experimental studies on peer pressure in groups of agents interacting in investment and gift exchange games (Mittone and Ploner, 2011, Gachter et al. 2010) have proved that the imitation of partners’ behaviors can have substantial effects on reciprocity, thus confirming that the effects of information also need to be studied in games where social preferences play a fundamental role. The aim of this paper is to ascertain whether trust is affected by contagion and herding in small groups of trustors who can observe each other’s choices over time. We account for three important factors of trustors’ preferences,namely: risk attitude, generosity and expected trustworthiness. Using our data we test the basic hypothesis that an individual's propensity to trust recipients in the Trust Game can be affected by the observed behavior of other trustors. Our results confirm that trust is affected by contagion effects. Furthermore, we find that specific types of agents (generous or untrusting) more often imitate the same type, when positioned in the same group. Finally, we find that untrusting individuals are less affected by their peers compared to generous individuals, and they imitate less even when positioned in groups of agents who have the same characteristics.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Department of Economics, University of Siena in its series Department of Economics University of Siena with number 626.
Date of creation: Nov 2011
Date of revision:
trust game; experiments; social influence; imitation;
Other versions of this item:
- Luigi Luini & Annamaria Nese & Patrizia Sbriglia, 2012. "Social Influence in Trustors' Neighborhoods," Labsi Experimental Economics Laboratory University of Siena 040, University of Siena.
- C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
- C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2012-01-03 (All new papers)
- NEP-CBE-2012-01-03 (Cognitive & Behavioural Economics)
- NEP-EVO-2012-01-03 (Evolutionary Economics)
- NEP-EXP-2012-01-03 (Experimental Economics)
- NEP-GTH-2012-01-03 (Game Theory)
- NEP-NET-2012-01-03 (Network Economics)
- NEP-SOC-2012-01-03 (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.:
- Servtka, Maros, 2009. "Separating reputation, social influence, and identification effects in a dictator game," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 53(2), pages 197-209, February.
- Eckel, Catherine C & Grossman, Philip J, 1998. "Are Women Less Selfish Than Men? Evidence from Dictator Experiments," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(448), pages 726-35, May.
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