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Can you trust the good guys? Trust within and between groups with different missions

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  • Fehrler, Sebastian
  • Kosfeld, Michael

Abstract

Non-governmental organizations and other non-profit organizations attract workers who strongly identify themselves with their missions. We study whether these “good guys” are more trustworthy, and how such pronounced group identities affect trust and trustworthiness within the groups and towards out-groups. We find that subjects who strongly identify themselves with a non-profit mission are more trustworthy in a minimal group setting but also harshly discriminate against out-groups when subjects are grouped by the missions they identify themselves with.

Suggested Citation

  • Fehrler, Sebastian & Kosfeld, Michael, 2013. "Can you trust the good guys? Trust within and between groups with different missions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 121(3), pages 400-404.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolet:v:121:y:2013:i:3:p:400-404 DOI: 10.1016/j.econlet.2013.09.007
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Fehrler, Sebastian & Kosfeld, Michael, 2014. "Pro-social missions and worker motivation: An experimental study," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 99-110.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Eger, Steffen, 2016. "Opinion dynamics and wisdom under out-group discrimination," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 80(C), pages 97-107.
    2. Fehrler, Sebastian & Przepiorka, Wojtek, 2016. "Choosing a partner for social exchange: Charitable giving as a signal of trustworthiness," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 129(C), pages 157-171.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Social identity theory; Group identity; Trust; Trustworthiness; Discrimination; Organization;

    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
    • M51 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Firm Employment Decisions; Promotions

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