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Exploiting moral wiggle room: Illusory preference for fairness? A comment

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  • Tara Larson
  • C. Monica Capra

Abstract

We designed an experiment to test the robustness of Dana, Weber, and Kuang's (DWK), 2007 results. DWK observed that, when participants were given a ``costless'' way --- the click of a button --- to ignore the consequences of their actions on others' payoffs, they chose to remain ignorant and fair behavior diminished. By implementing a double-blind experiment together with a design that controls for alternative explanations for the observed behavior, we confirmed DWK's findings.

Suggested Citation

  • Tara Larson & C. Monica Capra, 2009. "Exploiting moral wiggle room: Illusory preference for fairness? A comment," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 4(6), pages 467-474, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:jdm:journl:v:4:y:2009:i:6:p:467-474
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    3. Andreoni, James, 1990. "Impure Altruism and Donations to Public Goods: A Theory of Warm-Glow Giving?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(401), pages 464-477, June.
    4. James Konow, 2000. "Fair Shares: Accountability and Cognitive Dissonance in Allocation Decisions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 1072-1091, September.
    5. Juan D. Carrillo & Thomas Mariotti, 2000. "Strategic Ignorance as a Self-Disciplining Device," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 67(3), pages 529-544.
    6. Gary E. Bolton & Rami Zwick & Elena Katok, 1998. "Dictator game giving: Rules of fairness versus acts of kindness," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer;Game Theory Society, vol. 27(2), pages 269-299.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Tobias Regner, 2016. "Reciprocity under moral wiggle room: is it a preference or a constraint?," Jena Economic Research Papers 2016-024, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
    2. Linda Thunström & Klaas van ’t Veld & Jason F. Shogren & Jonas Nordström, 2014. "On strategic ignorance of environmental harm and social norms," Revue d'économie politique, Dalloz, vol. 124(2), pages 195-214.
    3. Chen, Jingnan & Houser, Daniel & Montinari, Natalia & Piovesan, Marco, 2016. "Beware of popular kids bearing gifts: A framed field experiment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 132(PA), pages 104-120.
    4. Grossman, Zachary & van der Weele, Joël, 2013. "Self-Image and Strategic Ignorance in Moral Dilemmas," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt0bp6z29t, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
    5. Jacobsen, Karin J. & Eika, Kari H. & Helland, Leif & Lind, Jo Thori & Nyborg, Karine, 2011. "Are nurses more altruistic than real estate brokers?," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 32(5), pages 818-831.
    6. Björn Bartling & Roberto A. Weber & Lan Yao, 2015. "Do Markets Erode Social Responsibility?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 130(1), pages 219-266.
    7. Homayoon Moradi & Alexander Nesterov, 2018. "Moral Wiggle Room Reverted: Information Avoidance is Myopic," HSE Working papers WP BRP 189/EC/2018, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
    8. Ploner, Matteo & Regner, Tobias, 2013. "Self-image and moral balancing: An experimental analysis," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 374-383.
    9. Linda Thunström & Jonas Nordström & Jason F. Shogren & Mariah Ehmke & Klaas Veld, 2016. "Strategic self-ignorance," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 52(2), pages 117-136, April.
    10. Tobias Regner & Astrid Matthey, 2015. "Do reciprocators exploit or resist moral wiggle room? An experimental analysis," Jena Economic Research Papers 2015-027, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
    11. Francesca Gino & Michael I. Norton & Roberto A. Weber, 2016. "Motivated Bayesians: Feeling Moral While Acting Egoistically," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 30(3), pages 189-212, Summer.
    12. Rustichini, Aldo & Villeval, Marie Claire, 2014. "Moral hypocrisy, power and social preferences," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 107(PA), pages 10-24.
    13. Catherine C. Eckel & Ragan Petrie, 2011. "Face Value," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(4), pages 1497-1513, June.
    14. Kajackaite, Agne, 2015. "If I close my eyes, nobody will get hurt: The effect of ignorance on performance in a real-effort experiment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 116(C), pages 518-524.
    15. Spiekermann, Kai & Weiss, Arne, 2016. "Objective and subjective compliance: A norm-based explanation of ‘moral wiggle room’," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 96(C), pages 170-183.
    16. Feiler, Lauren, 2014. "Testing models of information avoidance with binary choice dictator games," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 253-267.
    17. Cueva, Carlos & Dessi, Roberta, 2012. "Charitable Giving, Self-Image and Personality," TSE Working Papers 12-342, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
    18. Schütte, Miriam & Thoma, Carmen, 2014. "Promises and Image Concerns," Discussion Papers in Economics 20861, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
    19. Nyborg, Karine, 2011. "I don't want to hear about it: Rational ignorance among duty-oriented consumers," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 79(3), pages 263-274, August.
    20. Foster, Joshua, 2014. "Putting social preferences to work: Can revealed preferences predict real effort provision?," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 128-140.
    21. Ismael Rodriguez-Lara, 2015. "An experimental study of gender differences in distributive justice," Cuadernos de Economía - Spanish Journal of Economics and Finance, ELSEVIER, vol. 38(106), pages 27-36, Abril.
    22. repec:eee:joepsy:v:61:y:2017:i:c:p:134-144 is not listed on IDEAS
    23. Conrads, Julian & Irlenbusch, Bernd, 2011. "Strategic Ignorance in Bargaining," IZA Discussion Papers 6087, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    24. Christine L. Exley & Judd B. Kessler, 2017. "The Better is the Enemy of the Good," Harvard Business School Working Papers 18-017, Harvard Business School.
    25. Thunström, Linda & Cherry, Todd L. & McEvoy, David M. & Shogren, Jason F., 2016. "Endogenous context in a dictator game," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 65(C), pages 117-120.

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