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Economic and hypothetical dictator game experiments: Incentive effects at the individual level

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  • Ben-Ner, Avner
  • Kramer, Amit
  • Levy, Ori

Abstract

The paper compares behavior in economic dictator game experiments played with actual money (amounts given by "dictator" subjects) with behavior in hypothetical dictator game experiments where subjects indicate what they would give, although no money is actually exchanged. The average amounts transferred in the two experiments are remarkably similar. We uncover meaningful individual differences in real and hypothetical allocations and demonstrate the importance of two personality traits - agreeableness and extraversion - in reconciling them. We conclude that extraverts are "all talk;" agreeable subjects are "for real".

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  • Ben-Ner, Avner & Kramer, Amit & Levy, Ori, 2008. "Economic and hypothetical dictator game experiments: Incentive effects at the individual level," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(5), pages 1775-1784, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:soceco:v:37:y:2008:i:5:p:1775-1784
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:soceco:v:73:y:2018:i:c:p:93-98 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Hill, Ruth Vargas & Maruyama, Eduardo & Viceisza, Angelino, 2012. "Breaking the norm: An empirical investigation into the unraveling of good behavior," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(1), pages 150-162.
    3. Mentzakis, Emmanouil & Mestelman, Stuart, 2013. "Hypothetical bias in value orientations ring games," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 120(3), pages 562-565.
    4. Takanori Ida & Kazuhito Ogawa, 2012. "Inequality aversion, social discount, and time discount rates," International Journal of Social Economics, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 39(5), pages 314-329, April.
    5. Emin Karagözoğlu & Ümit Barış Urhan, 2017. "The Effect of Stake Size in Experimental Bargaining and Distribution Games: A Survey," Group Decision and Negotiation, Springer, vol. 26(2), pages 285-325, March.
    6. Armenak Antinyan, 2014. "Loss and Other-Regarding Preferences: Evidence From Dictator Game," Working Papers 03, Department of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venezia.
    7. Ben-Ner, Avner & Halldorsson, Freyr, 2010. "Trusting and trustworthiness: What are they, how to measure them, and what affects them," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 64-79, February.
    8. Christoph Bühren & Thorben C. Kundt, 2015. "Imagine being a nice guy: A note on hypothetical vs. incentivized social preferences," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 10(2), pages 185-190, March.
    9. Hollibaugh, Gary E. & Klingler, Jonathan & Ramey, Adam, 2014. "More than a Feeling: Personality and Congressional Behavior," IAST Working Papers 14-09, Institute for Advanced Study in Toulouse (IAST).
    10. Walkowitz, Gari, 2017. "On the Validity of Cost-Saving Methods in Dictator-Game Experiments: A Systematic Test," MPRA Paper 83309, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Ben-Ner, Avner & McCall, Brian P. & Stephane, Massoud & Wang, Hua, 2009. "Identity and in-group/out-group differentiation in work and giving behaviors: Experimental evidence," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 153-170, October.
    12. Kettner, Sara Elisa & Waichman, Israel, 2016. "Old age and prosocial behavior: Social preferences or experimental confounds?," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 118-130.
    13. Ondrej Rydval, 2011. "The Causal Effect of Cognitive Abilities on Economic Behavior: Evidence from a Forecasting Task with Varying Cognitive Load," Jena Economic Research Papers 2011-064, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
    14. Maciej Jakubowski, 2015. "Latent variables and propensity score matching: a simulation study with application to data from the Programme for International Student Assessment in Poland," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 48(3), pages 1287-1325, May.
    15. repec:eee:joepsy:v:62:y:2017:i:c:p:130-154 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Dictator game Incentives Individual differences Personality;

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty

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