The Costs of Deception: Evidence from Psychology
Recently, it has been argued that the evidence in social science research suggests that deceiving participants in an experiment does not lead to a significant loss of experimental control. Based on this assessment, experimental economists were counseled to lift their de facto prohibition against deception to capture its potential benefits. To the extent that this recommendation is derived from empirical studies, we argue that it draws on a selective sample of the available evidence. Building on a systematic review of relevant research in psychology, we present two major results: First, the evidence suggests that the experience of having been deceived generates suspicion that in turn is likely to affect the judgment and decision making of a non-negligible number of participants. Second, we find little evidence for the reputational spillover effects that have been hypothesized by a number of authors in psychology and economics (e.g., Kelman, H.C., 1967. Psychological Bulletin. 67, 1–11; Davis, D.D. and Holt, C.A., 1993. Experimental Economics. Princeton University Press, Princeton). Based on a discussion of the methodological costs and benefits of deception, we conclude that experimental economists' prohibition of deception is a sensible convention that economists should not abandon. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002
Volume (Year): 5 (2002)
Issue (Month): 2 (October)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.springer.com|
More information through EDIRC
|Order Information:||Web: http://www.springer.com/economics/economic+theory/journal/10683/PS2|
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.:
- Bonetti, Shane, 1998. "Experimental economics and deception," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 377-395, June.
- Weimann, Joachim, 1994. "Individual behaviour in a free riding experiment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 185-200, June.
- Smith, Vernon L, 1982. "Microeconomic Systems as an Experimental Science," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(5), pages 923-955, December.
- Nicholas Bardsley, 2000. "Control Without Deception: Individual Behaviour in Free-Riding Experiments Revisited," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 3(3), pages 215-240, December.
- Kjell Hausken, 1995. "Intra-Level and Inter-Level Interaction," Rationality and Society, , vol. 7(4), pages 465-488, October.
- Hausken, Kjell, 1995. "The dynamics of within-group and between-group interaction," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(7), pages 655-687.
- Hoffman, Elizabeth & McCabe, Kevin & Smith, Vernon L, 1996. "Social Distance and Other-Regarding Behavior in Dictator Games," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 653-660, June.
- Kreps, David M., 1990. "Game Theory and Economic Modelling," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198283812, April.
- McDaniel, Tanga & Starmer, Chris, 1998. "Experimental economics and deception: A comment," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 403-409, June.
- Ortmann, Andreas & Tichy, Lisa K., 1999. "Gender differences in the laboratory: evidence from prisoner's dilemma games," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 327-339, July.
- Bonetti, Shane, 1998. "Reply to Hey and Starmer & McDaniel," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 411-414, June.