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Experimental Evidence on Other-Regarding Preferences: Dictators Give to Help the Less Fortunate

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Author Info

  • Korenok Oleg

    ()
    (Department of Economics, VCU School of Business)

  • Edward L. Millner

    ()
    (Department of Economics, VCU School of Business)

  • Laura Razzolini

    ()
    (Department of Economics, VCU School of Business)

Abstract

In the typical dictator game, the majority of dictators choose to pass at least a portion of their endowment to recipients who are given no endowment. We modify the dictator game by giving the recipient an endowment. We then measure the impact of varying the recipient’s endowment on the amount passed by the dictator. As the recipient’s endowment increases, the majority of dictators decrease the amount passed and pass nothing when endowments are equalized. We conclude that in the typical dictator game most dictators pass because they care about the recipients who are given no endowments.

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File URL: http://www.people.vcu.edu/~okorenok/DictatorEquity_2009-07-27.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by VCU School of Business, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 0807.

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Length: 23 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2008
Date of revision: Aug 2009
Handle: RePEc:vcu:wpaper:0807

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Keywords: Dictator game; Other-regarding preferences; Altruism;

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References

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  1. James Andreoni & John Miller, 2002. "Giving According to GARP: An Experimental Test of the Consistency of Preferences for Altruism," Econometrica, Econometric Society, Econometric Society, vol. 70(2), pages 737-753, March.
  2. Fehr, Ernst & Schmidt, Klaus M., . "A theory of fairness, competition, and cooperation," Chapters in Economics, University of Munich, Department of Economics, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  3. Bolton, G. & Katok, E., 1995. "An Experimental Test of the Crowding Out Hypothesis: The Nature of Beneficient Behavior," UFAE and IAE Working Papers, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC) 295.95, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  4. Konow, James, 2006. "Mixed Feelings: Theories and Evidence of Warm Glow and Altruism," MPRA Paper 2727, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Axel Ockenfels & Gary E. Bolton, 2000. "ERC: A Theory of Equity, Reciprocity, and Competition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 90(1), pages 166-193, March.
  6. Nicholas Bardsley, 2008. "Dictator game giving: altruism or artefact?," Experimental Economics, Springer, Springer, vol. 11(2), pages 122-133, June.
  7. Eckel, Catherine C. & Grossman, Philip J. & Johnston, Rachel M., 2005. "An experimental test of the crowding out hypothesis," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 89(8), pages 1543-1560, August.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Fehr, Ernst & Schmidt, Klaus M., 2009. "On Inequity Aversion - A Reply to Binmore and Shaked," Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems 256, Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich.
  2. Konow, James, 2010. "Mixed feelings: Theories of and evidence on giving," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 94(3-4), pages 279-297, April.

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