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Smart or Selfish - When Smart Guys Finish Nice

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  • Lohse, Johannes

Abstract

In three different variants of an one-shot public good game I analyze the relationship between cooperation and cognitive abilities, assessed through the cognitive reflection test (CRT). In a between-subjects design, the baseline case is contrasted with two treatment conditions that allow to control for two potentially moderating factors: By employing a test for the presence of confusion, the first condition scrutinizes whether higher cognitive abilities are correlated with cooperation proper or simply grant a better understanding of the incentive structure. The second condition explores the proposition that the link between cognitive abilities and cooperation could depend on the complexity of the decision situation. To exogenously create a cognitively more demanding choice setting, subjects had to decide under time pressure. I find a strong and positive relationship between CRT-scores and cooperation, that is not driven by confusion. Time pressure has a strongly moderating effect on this relationship.

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  • Lohse, Johannes, 2014. "Smart or Selfish - When Smart Guys Finish Nice," Working Papers 0578, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:awi:wpaper:0578
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    Cited by:

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    4. Anna Louisa Merkel & Johannes Lohse, 2019. "Is fairness intuitive? An experiment accounting for subjective utility differences under time pressure," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 22(1), pages 24-50, March.
    5. Yi Yang Teoh & Ziqing Yao & William A. Cunningham & Cendri A. Hutcherson, 2020. "Attentional priorities drive effects of time pressure on altruistic choice," Nature Communications, Nature, vol. 11(1), pages 1-13, December.
    6. Amanda Kvarven & Eirik Strømland & Conny Wollbrant & David Andersson & Magnus Johannesson & Gustav Tinghög & Daniel Västfjäll & Kristian Ove R. Myrseth, 2020. "The intuitive cooperation hypothesis revisited: a meta-analytic examination of effect size and between-study heterogeneity," Journal of the Economic Science Association, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 6(1), pages 26-42, June.
    7. Anders Poulsen & Axel Sonntag, 2019. "Focality is Intuitive - Experimental Evidence on the Effects of Time Pressure in Coordination Games," Working Paper series, University of East Anglia, Centre for Behavioural and Experimental Social Science (CBESS) 19-01, School of Economics, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK..
    8. Chen Daniel L., 2019. "Law and Literature: Theory and Evidence on Empathy and Guile," Review of Law & Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 15(1), pages 1-33, March.
    9. Balafoutas, Loukas & Jaber-Lopez, Tarek, 2018. "Impunity under pressure: On the role of emotions as a commitment device," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 168(C), pages 112-114.
    10. Michalis Drouvelis & Johannes Lohse, 2020. "Cognitive abilities and risk taking: the role of preferences," Discussion Papers 20-02, Department of Economics, University of Birmingham.
    11. Cueva, Carlos & Iturbe-Ormaetxe, Iñigo & Mata-Pérez, Esther & Ponti, Giovanni & Sartarelli, Marcello & Yu, Haihan & Zhukova, Vita, 2016. "Cognitive (ir)reflection: New experimental evidence," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 81-93.
    12. Duffy, Sean & Naddeo, JJ & Owens, David & Smith, John, 2016. "Cognitive load and mixed strategies: On brains and minimax," MPRA Paper 89720, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. Peng, Hui-Chun, 2020. "Effect of cognitive ability on matching and rebate subsidies," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 19-25.
    14. Eliza L. Y. Wong & Juan Manuel Ramos-Goñi & Annie W. L. Cheung & Amy Y. K. Wong & Oliver Rivero-Arias, 2018. "Assessing the Use of a Feedback Module to Model EQ-5D-5L Health States Values in Hong Kong," The Patient: Patient-Centered Outcomes Research, Springer;International Academy of Health Preference Research, vol. 11(2), pages 235-247, April.
    15. Arvid Erlandsson & Artur Nilsson & Gustav Tinghög & Daniel Västfjäll, 2018. "Bullshit-sensitivity predicts prosocial behavior," PLOS ONE, Public Library of Science, vol. 13(7), pages 1-12, July.
    16. Daniel Horn & Hubert Janos Kiss, 2018. "Which preferences associate with school performance?—Lessons from an exploratory study with university students," PLOS ONE, Public Library of Science, vol. 13(2), pages 1-32, February.
    17. Hannes Lang & Gregory DeAngelo & Michelle Bongard, 2018. "Explaining Public Goods Game Contributions with Rational Ability," Games, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 9(2), pages 1-9, June.
    18. Goeschl, Timo & Lohse, Johannes, 2018. "Cooperation in public good games. Calculated or confused?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 185-203.
    19. Guo, Qingke & Sun, Peng & Cai, Minghang & Zhang, Xiling & Song, Kexin, 2019. "Why are smarter individuals more prosocial? A study on the mediating roles of empathy and moral identity," Intelligence, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 1-8.
    20. Marianna Belloc & Ennio Bilancini & Leonardo Boncinelli & Simone D'Alessandro, 2017. "A Social Heuristics Hypothesis for the Stag Hunt: Fast- and Slow-Thinking Hunters in the Lab," CESifo Working Paper Series 6824, CESifo.

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    Keywords

    Cooperation; Cognitive Abilities; Confusion; Public Goods; Dual Process Theories.;
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