IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

To give or not to give? Equity, efficiency and altruistic behavior in an artefactual field experiment

Listed author(s):
  • Pelligra, Vittorio
  • Stanca, Luca

We investigate the relative importance of the equity and efficiency motives for altruistic behavior using an artefactual field experiment. A set of binary dictator games is implemented within a telephone survey conducted with a representative sample of adults. The results indicate that, overall, equity plays a more important role than efficiency for the decision to give. Relative to the general population, young individuals are less concerned with inequality, while individuals with higher education are more concerned with social welfare. This indicates that lab experiments, generally implemented with young and educated university students, may lead to overestimate the importance of efficiency, relative to equity, as a determinant of altruistic behavior.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1053535713000930
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics).

Volume (Year): 46 (2013)
Issue (Month): C ()
Pages: 1-9

as
in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:soceco:v:46:y:2013:i:c:p:1-9
DOI: 10.1016/j.socec.2013.05.015
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/620175

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as
in new window


  1. Barmettler, Franziska & Fehr, Ernst & Zehnder, Christian, 2011. "Big Experimenter Is Watching You! Anonymity and Prosocial Behavior in the Laboratory," IZA Discussion Papers 5925, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Charness, Gary & Rabin, Matthew, 2001. "Understanding Social Preferences with Simple Tests," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt4qz9k8vg, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  3. Fehr, Ernst & Schmidt, Klaus M., . "A theory of fairness, competition, and cooperation," Chapters in Economics, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  4. Ernst Fehr & Michael Naef & Klaus M. Schmidt, 2006. "Inequality Aversion, Efficiency, and Maximin Preferences in Simple Distribution Experiments: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(5), pages 1912-1917, December.
  5. Korenok Oleg & Edward L. Millner & Laura Razzolini, 2010. "Impure Altruism in Dictators’ Giving," Working Papers 1002, VCU School of Business, Department of Economics, revised Jan 2011.
  6. John A. List, 2007. "On the Interpretation of Giving in Dictator Games," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 115, pages 482-493.
  7. Falk, Armin & Heckman, James J., 2009. "Lab Experiments Are a Major Source of Knowledge in the Social Sciences," IZA Discussion Papers 4540, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Falk, Armin & Fischbacher, Urs, 2001. "A Theory of Reciprocity," CEPR Discussion Papers 3014, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Nagore Iriberri & Pedro Rey-Biel, "undated". "Elicited Beliefs and Social Information in Modified Dictator Games: What Do Dictators Believe Other Dictators Do?," Working Papers 405, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  10. Falk, Armin & Meier, Stephan & Zehnder, Christian, 2010. "Did We Overestimate the Role of Social Preferences? The Case of Self-Selected Student Samples," CEPR Discussion Papers 8019, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Werner Güth & M. Vittoria Levati & Matteo Ploner, 2009. "Making the World a better Place: Experimental evidence from the generosity Game," Jena Economic Research Papers 2009-071, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
  12. Glenn Harrison & John List, 2004. "Field experiments," Artefactual Field Experiments 00058, The Field Experiments Website.
  13. Kohler, Stefan, 2011. "Altruism and fairness in experimental decisions," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 101-109.
  14. D Nosenzo & Jon Anderson & Stephen V Burks & Jeffrey Carpenter & Lorenz Gotte & Karsten Maurer & Ruth Potter & Kim Rocha & Aldo Rustichini, 2012. "Self-Selection and Variations in the Laboratory Measurment of Other-Regarding Preferences Across Subject Pools: Evidence from One College Student and Two Adult Samples," Discussion Papers 2012-14, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
  15. Christina M. Fong & Erzo F.P. Luttmer, 2009. "Do Race and Fairness Matter in Generosity? Evidence from a Nationally Representative Charity Experiment," NBER Working Papers 15064, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Bellemare, C. & Kroger, S. & van Soest, A.H.O., 2008. "Measuring inequity aversion in a heterogeneous population using experimental decisions and subjective probabilities," Other publications TiSEM f17bda32-98f9-4580-ab3f-6, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
  17. Jeffrey Carpenter & Cristina Connolly & Caitlin Myers, 2008. "Altruistic behavior in a representative dictator experiment," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 11(3), pages 282-298, September.
  18. Ray Fisman & Shachar Kariv & Daniel Markovits, 2006. "Individual Preferences for Giving," Levine's Bibliography 666156000000000468, UCLA Department of Economics.
  19. Rene Bekkers, 2007. "Measuring altruistic behavior in surveys: The all-or-nothing dictator game," Artefactual Field Experiments 00102, The Field Experiments Website.
  20. Bellemare, Charles & Kröger, Sabine & van Soest, Arthur, 2011. "Preferences, intentions, and expectation violations: A large-scale experiment with a representative subject pool," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 78(3), pages 349-365, May.
  21. Fehr, Ernst & Fischbacher, Urs & von Rosenbladt, Bernhard & Schupp, Jürgen & Wagner, Gert G., 2003. "A nation-wide laboratory: Examining trust and trustworthiness by integrating behavioral experiments into representative surveys," Discussion Papers 2003/1, Technische Universität Berlin, School of Economics and Management.
  22. Cappelen, Alexander W. & Nygaard, Knut & Sørensen, Erik Ø. & Tungodden, Bertil, 2010. "Efficiency, equality and reciprocity in social preferences: A comparison of students and a representative population," Discussion Paper Series in Economics 28/2010, Department of Economics, Norwegian School of Economics.
  23. Carpenter, Jeffrey & Myers, Caitlin Knowles, 2010. "Why volunteer? Evidence on the role of altruism, image, and incentives," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(11-12), pages 911-920, December.
  24. Blair L. Cleave & Nikos Nikiforakis & Robert Slonim, 2010. "Is There Selection Bias in Laboratory Experiments?," Department of Economics - Working Papers Series 1106, The University of Melbourne.
  25. Charness, Gary B & Grosskopf, Brit, 2000. "Relative Payoffs And Happiness: An Experimental Study," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt8389x8z2, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
  26. Ernst Fehr & John List, 2004. "The hidden costs and returns of incentives - trust and trustworthiness among ceos," Artefactual Field Experiments 00044, The Field Experiments Website.
  27. Blanco, Mariana & Engelmann, Dirk & Normann, Hans-Theo, 2010. "A within-subject analysis of other-regarding preferences," DICE Discussion Papers 06, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE), University of Düsseldorf.
  28. Axel Ockenfels & Gary E. Bolton, 2000. "ERC: A Theory of Equity, Reciprocity, and Competition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(1), pages 166-193, March.
  29. Edward L. Glaeser & David I. Laibson & José A. Scheinkman & Christine L. Soutter, 2000. "Measuring Trust," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(3), pages 811-846.
    • Glaeser, Edward Ludwig & Laibson, David I. & Scheinkman, Jose A. & Soutter, Christine L., 2000. "Measuring Trust," Scholarly Articles 4481497, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  30. Daniel Zizzo, 2010. "Experimenter demand effects in economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 13(1), pages 75-98, March.
  31. Abeler, Johannes & Nosenzo, Daniele, 2013. "Self-Selection into Economics Experiments Is Driven by Monetary Rewards," IZA Discussion Papers 7374, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  32. Engelmann, Dirk, 2012. "How not to extend models of inequality aversion," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 81(2), pages 599-605.
  33. Dirk Engelmann & Martin Strobel, 2004. "Inequality Aversion, Efficiency, and Maximin Preferences in Simple Distribution Experiments," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(4), pages 857-869, September.
  34. John List, 2004. "Young, selfish, and male: Field evidence of social preferences," Natural Field Experiments 00298, The Field Experiments Website.
  35. Robin Cubitt & Chris Starmer & Robert Sugden, 1998. "On the Validity of the Random Lottery Incentive System," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 1(2), pages 115-131, September.
  36. John A. List & Robert P. Berrens & Alok K. Bohara & Joe Kerkvliet, 2004. "Examining the Role of Social Isolation on Stated Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 741-752, June.
  37. M. Rabin, 2001. "Incorporating Fairness into Game Theory and Economics," Levine's Working Paper Archive 511, David K. Levine.
  38. Steven D. Levitt & John A. List, 2007. "What Do Laboratory Experiments Measuring Social Preferences Reveal About the Real World?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(2), pages 153-174, Spring.
  39. James Andreoni & John Miller, 2002. "Giving According to GARP: An Experimental Test of the Consistency of Preferences for Altruism," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(2), pages 737-753, March.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:soceco:v:46:y:2013:i:c:p:1-9. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.