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What are Relevant Work Incentive Models? Shirking Model, Gift Exchange Model, or Reciprocity Model

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  • Akinori Tomohara

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  • Akihiko Ohno

Abstract

This empirical study examines the relevance of different work incentive models by distinguishing reciprocity induced by pecuniary and non-pecuniary factors. Although the literature does not present an examination of different models all together but rather specifically examines each model mainly through experimental laboratory games, we study which models are suitable to explain work incentives in real labor markets. Our analyses reveal that overall reciprocity induced by non-pecuniary factors motivates employees well. The shirking model induces effort only if employees face a high level of vulnerability to firing. However, the high level of vulnerability to dismissal invalidates the gift exchange and reciprocity models. These results can complement controlled laboratory experiments, whose results are often restricted in applying to the reality. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Suggested Citation

  • Akinori Tomohara & Akihiko Ohno, 2013. "What are Relevant Work Incentive Models? Shirking Model, Gift Exchange Model, or Reciprocity Model," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 34(2), pages 241-252, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:jlabre:v:34:y:2013:i:2:p:241-252
    DOI: 10.1007/s12122-013-9159-z
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Effort; Gift exchange; Reciprocity; Shirking; JEL Classification; J0; J16; J5;

    JEL classification:

    • J0 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J5 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining

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