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Awards as signals

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  • Bruno S. Frey
  • Susanne Neckermann

Abstract

Awards are widespread in all countries and are prevalent both in the public sphere and in the private sector. This paper argues, and empirically supports, that awards serve public functions and economists should take them seriously. Using a unique cross-country data set, we suggest that awards serve as signals. Awards are more prevalent the more difficult the position and status of an individual is to observe due to an anonymous and globalized setting.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich in its series IEW - Working Papers with number 513.

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Date of creation: Oct 2010
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Handle: RePEc:zur:iewwpx:513

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Keywords: Awards; signals; status; anonymity; globalization;

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  1. Susanne Neckermann & Reto Cueni & Bruno S. Frey, 2009. "What is an Award Worth? An Econometric Assessment of the Impact of Awards on Employee Performance," CESifo Working Paper Series 2657, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Victor A. Ginsburgh & Jan C. van Ours, 2003. "Expert Opinion and Compensation: Evidence from a Musical Competition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 289-296, March.
  3. Dan Ariely & Anat Bracha & Stephan Meier, 2007. "Doing good or doing well? Image motivation and monetary incentives in behaving prosocially," Working Papers 07-9, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
  4. Bruno S. Frey & Susanne Neckermann, 2008. "Awards - A View from Psychological Economics," CREMA Working Paper Series 2008-02, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA).
  5. Andreoni, James & Petrie, Ragan, 2004. "Public goods experiments without confidentiality: a glimpse into fund-raising," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(7-8), pages 1605-1623, July.
  6. Axel Dreher & Friedrich G. Schneider, 2006. "Corruption and the shadow economy: An empirical analysis," Economics working papers 2006-03, Department of Economics, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria.
  7. Michael Kosfeld & Susanne Neckermann, 2011. "Getting More Work for Nothing? Symbolic Awards and Worker Performance," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(3), pages 86-99, August.
  8. Gary S. Becker, 1962. "Investment in Human Capital: A Theoretical Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 9.
  9. Spence, A Michael, 1973. "Job Market Signaling," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 87(3), pages 355-74, August.
  10. Samuel Bowles, 1998. "Endogenous Preferences: The Cultural Consequences of Markets and Other Economic Institutions," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(1), pages 75-111, March.
  11. Katz, Eliakim & Ziderman, Adrian, 1990. "Investment in General Training: The Role of Information and Labour Mobility," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(403), pages 1147-58, December.
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