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Taking punishment into your own hands: An experiment on the motivation underlying punishment

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  • Duersch, Peter
  • Müller, Julia

Abstract

In a punishment experiment, we separate the demand for punishment in general from a possible demand to conduct punishment personally. Subjects experience an unfair split of their earnings from a real effort task and have to decide on the punishment of the person who determines the distribution. First, it is established whether the allocator's payoff is reduced and, afterwards, subjects take part in a second price auction for the right to (physically) carry out the act of payoff reduction. This auction only resolves who will punish, not whether punishment takes place, so only subjects with a demand for personal punishment should bid.

Suggested Citation

  • Duersch, Peter & Müller, Julia, 2010. "Taking punishment into your own hands: An experiment on the motivation underlying punishment," Working Papers 0501, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:awi:wpaper:0501
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Ernst Fehr & Klaus M. Schmidt, 1999. "A Theory of Fairness, Competition, and Cooperation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 817-868.
    2. Dufwenberg, Martin & Kirchsteiger, Georg, 2004. "A theory of sequential reciprocity," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 268-298, May.
    3. Simon Gachter & Ernst Fehr, 2000. "Cooperation and Punishment in Public Goods Experiments," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 980-994, September.
    4. David Masclet & Charles Noussair & Steven Tucker & Marie-Claire Villeval, 2003. "Monetary and Nonmonetary Punishment in the Voluntary Contributions Mechanism," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 366-380, March.
    5. Josef Falkinger, 2000. "A Simple Mechanism for the Efficient Provision of Public Goods: Experimental Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(1), pages 247-264, March.
    6. Falk, Armin & Fischbacher, Urs, 2006. "A theory of reciprocity," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 293-315, February.
    7. Nikos Nikiforakis & Hans-Theo Normann, 2008. "A comparative statics analysis of punishment in public-good experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 11(4), pages 358-369, December.
    8. 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.
    9. Rabin, Matthew, 1993. "Incorporating Fairness into Game Theory and Economics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(5), pages 1281-1302, December.
    10. Casari, Marco & Luini, Luigi, 2009. "Cooperation under alternative punishment institutions: An experiment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 273-282, August.
    11. Greiner, Ben, 2004. "An Online Recruitment System for Economic Experiments," MPRA Paper 13513, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. repec:cup:apsrev:v:86:y:1992:i:02:p:404-417_08 is not listed on IDEAS
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    Cited by:

    1. Aurelie Ouss & Alexander Peysakhovich, . "When Punishment Doesn't Pay: "Cold Glow" and Decisions to Punish," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 58(3).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    personal punishment; real effort task; experiment; auction; desire to win;

    JEL classification:

    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior

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