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Informational inequity aversion and performance

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  • Bohnet, Iris
  • Saidi, Farzad

Abstract

In labor markets, some individuals have, or believe to have, less data on the determinants of success than others, e.g., due to differential access to technology or role models. We provide experimental evidence on when and how informational differences translate into performance differences. In a laboratory tournament setting, we varied the degree to which individuals were informed about the effort-reward relationship, and whether their competitor received the same or a different amount of information. We find performance is adversely affected only by worse relative, but not absolute, informedness. This suggests that inequity aversion applies not only to outcomes but also to information that helps achieve them, and stresses the importance of inequality in initial information conditions for performance-dependent outcomes.

Suggested Citation

  • Bohnet, Iris & Saidi, Farzad, 2019. "Informational inequity aversion and performance," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 159(C), pages 181-191.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:159:y:2019:i:c:p:181-191
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2019.02.005
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    Keywords

    Tournament; Information; Inequity aversion; Performance; Effort task;

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • M50 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - General

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