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Is cooperation instinctive? Evidence from the response times in a public goods game

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  • Gianna Lotito
  • Matteo Migheli

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  • Guido Ortona

Abstract

We use data on response times from a public goods experiment to test the hypothesis that cooperation is instinctive, under the assumption that the longer the time of the decision, the less instinctive the choice. Results seem to support the hypothesis that cooperation is instinctive, while defection is ‘rational’. Moreover, as the experiment is designed also to assess the effects of the consumption of relational goods on cooperation, we are also able to state that some types of relational goods, like team working, produce additional cooperation, but make it less spontaneous. We also detect that females seem to behave less instinctively than males. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2013

Suggested Citation

  • Gianna Lotito & Matteo Migheli & Guido Ortona, 2013. "Is cooperation instinctive? Evidence from the response times in a public goods game," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 123-133, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jbioec:v:15:y:2013:i:2:p:123-133 DOI: 10.1007/s10818-012-9141-5
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    Cited by:

    1. Jérôme Hergueux & Nicolas Jacquemet & Stéphane Luchini & Jason Shogren, 2016. "Leveraging the Honor Code: Public Goods Contributions under Oath," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-01379060, HAL.
    2. Brice Corgnet & Antonio M. Espín & Roberto Hernán-González, 2015. "The cognitive basis of social behavior: cognitive reflection overrides antisocial but not always prosocial motives," Working Papers 15-04, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
    3. Martin G. Kocher & Peter Martinsson & Kristian Ove R. Myrseth & Conny E. Wollbrant, 2017. "Strong, bold, and kind: self-control and cooperation in social dilemmas," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 20(1), pages 44-69, March.
    4. Fadong Chen & Urs Fischbacher, 2015. "Cognitive Processes of Distributional Preferences: A Response Time Study," TWI Research Paper Series 101, Thurgauer Wirtschaftsinstitut, Universit�t Konstanz.
    5. Marta Dyrkacz & Michal Krawczyk, 2015. "Exploring the role of deliberation time in non-selfish behaviour: the Double Response method," Working Papers 2015-27, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    6. Jérôme Hergueux & Nicolas Jacquemet, 2015. "Social preferences in the online laboratory: a randomized experiment," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 18(2), pages 251-283, June.
    7. repec:spr:grdene:v:24:y:2015:i:4:d:10.1007_s10726-014-9409-3 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Ariel Rubenstein, 2013. "Response time and decision making: An experimental study," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 8(5), pages 540-551, September.
    9. Alexander W. Cappelen & Ulrik H. Nielsen & Bertil Tungodden & Jean-Robert Tyran & Erik Wengström, 2016. "Fairness is intuitive," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, pages 727-740.
    10. Pascal J. Kieslich & Benjamin E. Hilbig, 2014. "Cognitive conflict in social dilemmas: An analysis of response dynamics," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 9(6), pages 510-522, November.
    11. Nielsen, Ulrik H. & Tyran, Jean-Robert & Wengström, Erik, 2014. "Second thoughts on free riding," Economics Letters, Elsevier, pages 136-139.
    12. Sergio F. Góngora y Moreno & J. Octavio Gutierrez-Garcia, 0. "Collective action in organizational structures," Computational and Mathematical Organization Theory, Springer, vol. 0, pages 1-33.
    13. Goeschl, Timo & Lohse, Johannes, 2016. "Cooperation in Public Good Games. Calculated or Confused?," Working Papers 0626, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics.
    14. Martinsson, Peter & Myrseth, Kristian Ove R. & Wollbrant, Conny, 2014. "Social dilemmas: When self-control benefits cooperation," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 213-236.
    15. Merkel, Anna & Lohse, Johannes, 2016. "Is fairness intuitive? An experiment accounting for the role of subjective utility differences under time pressure," Working Papers 0627, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics.
    16. repec:eee:jbrese:v:81:y:2017:i:c:p:70-79 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Response times; Cooperation; Public goods experiments; Gender effect; C91; D03; H41;

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods

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