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Pro-social motivation, effort and the call to public service

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  • Banuri, Sheheryar
  • Keefer, Philip

Abstract

We investigate the interaction of pro-social motivation and wages in pro-social organizations with a novel subject pool, 1700 students destined for the private and public sectors in Indonesia, using a measure of pro-social motivation that exactly matches the mission of the organization. Three novel conclusions emerge. Consistent with a common, but untested, assumption in the theoretical literature, workers with greater pro-social motivation exert higher real effort. However, high pay attracts less pro-socially motivated individuals. Furthermore, we also test whether a real world pro-social organization (the Indonesian Ministry of Finance) attracts pro-socially motivated workers. We find that prospective entrants into the Indonesian Ministry of Finance exhibit higher levels of pro-social motivation than a comparable sample of general workers.

Suggested Citation

  • Banuri, Sheheryar & Keefer, Philip, 2016. "Pro-social motivation, effort and the call to public service," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 139-164.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:83:y:2016:i:c:p:139-164
    DOI: 10.1016/j.euroecorev.2015.10.011
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    Cited by:

    1. Dur, Robert & van Lent, Max, 2018. "Serving the public interest in several ways: Theory and empirics," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 13-24.
    2. Andrew Dustan & Juan Manuel Hernandez-Agramonte & Stanislao Maldonado, 2018. "Motivating bureaucrats with non-monetary incentives when state capacity is weak: Evidence from large-scale," Natural Field Experiments 00664, The Field Experiments Website.
    3. Non, Arjan & Rohde, Ingrid & de Grip, Andries & Dohmen, Thomas, 2019. "Mission of the company, prosocial attitudes and job preferences: a discrete choice experiment," Research Memorandum 020, Maastricht University, Graduate School of Business and Economics (GSBE).
    4. Brice Corgnet, 2018. "Rac(g)e Against the Machine? Social Incentives When Humans Meet Robots," Post-Print halshs-01984467, HAL.
    5. Sheheryar Banuri & Philip Keefer, 2016. "Mellowing with Tenure? Socialization Increases Prosocial Behavior in Public Organizations," Research in Experimental Economics, in: Sebastian J. Goerg & John R. Hamman (ed.), Experiments in Organizational Economics, volume 19, pages 127-140, Emerald Publishing Ltd.
    6. Sheheryar Banuri & Stefan Dercon & Varun Gauri, 2019. "Biased Policy Professionals," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 33(2), pages 310-327.
    7. Jeworrek, Sabrina & Mertins, Vanessa, 2019. "Mission, motivation, and the active decision to work for a social cause," IWH Discussion Papers 10/2019, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
    8. Chang Woon Nam & Peter Steinhoff, 2019. "The Role of Volunteers in German Refugee Crisis and Their Contribution to Local Government Expenditure," CESifo Forum, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 20(03), pages 25-30, October.
    9. Mbiti, Isaac M. & Serra, Danila, 2018. "Health Workers' Behavior, Patient Reporting and Reputational Concerns: Lab-in-the-Field Experimental Evidence from Kenya," IZA Discussion Papers 11352, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    10. Barigozzi, Francesca & Burani, Nadia & Raggi, Davide, 2018. "Productivity crowding-out in labor markets with motivated workers," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 151(C), pages 199-218.
    11. Sheheryar Banuri & Philip Keefer & Damien de Walque, 2017. "Love the job... or the patient? Task vs. mission-based motiviations in healthcare," Working Paper series, University of East Anglia, Centre for Behavioural and Experimental Social Science (CBESS) 17-09, School of Economics, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK..
    12. Prasenjit Banerjee & Vegard Iversen & Sandip Mitra & Antonio Nicolò & Kunal Sen, 2018. "Politicians and their promises in an uncertain world: Evidence from a lab-in-the-field experiment in India," The School of Economics Discussion Paper Series 1806, Economics, The University of Manchester.
    13. Dustan, Andrew & Maldonado, Stanislao & Hernandez-Agramonte, Juan Manuel, 2018. "Motivating bureaucrats with non-monetary incentives when state capacity is weak: Evidence from large-scale field experiments in Peru," MPRA Paper 90952, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Jones, Daniel & Tonin, Mirco & Vlassopoulos, Michael, 2018. "Paying for What Kind of Performance? Performance Pay and Multitasking in Mission-Oriented Jobs," IZA Discussion Papers 11674, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    15. Alessandro Fedele & Pierpaolo Giannoccolo, 2018. "Paying Politicians: Not Too Little, Not Too Much," BEMPS - Bozen Economics & Management Paper Series BEMPS47, Faculty of Economics and Management at the Free University of Bozen.
    16. Sheheryar Banuri & Katarina Dankova & Philip Keefer, 2017. "It's not all fun and games: Feedback, task motivation, and effort," Working Paper series, University of East Anglia, Centre for Behavioural and Experimental Social Science (CBESS) 17-10, School of Economics, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK..
    17. Daniel Gibbs, 2019. "Selection rates and bureaucratic performance," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 20(2), pages 159-181, June.
    18. Arimoto, Yutaka & Kurata, Masamitsu, 2017. "Adoption of Management Practices in the Public Sector of Bangladesh," Discussion Paper Series 654, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
    19. Anne Boring & Claudine Desrieux & Romain Espinosa, 2018. "Aspiring Top Civil Servants' Distrust in the Private Sector
      [Méfiance envers le secteur privé des aspirants hauts fonctionnaires]
      ," Post-Print halshs-01759358, HAL.
    20. Banuri’s, Sheheryar & de Oliveira, Angela C.M. & Eckel, Catherine C., 2019. "Care provision: An experimental investigation," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 157(C), pages 615-630.
    21. Barigozzi, Francesca & Burani, Nadia, 2019. "Competition for talent when firms' mission matters," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 116(C), pages 128-151.
    22. Jones, Daniel & Tonin, Mirco & Vlassopoulos, Michael, 2018. "Paying for What Kind of Performance? Performance Pay and Multitasking in Mission-Oriented Jobs," IZA Discussion Papers 11674, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Public sector reform; Civil service; Intrinsic motivation; Extrinsic motivation; Performance;

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • H83 - Public Economics - - Miscellaneous Issues - - - Public Administration
    • J45 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Public Sector Labor Markets

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