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Intention-Based Reciprocity and the Hidden Costs of Control

  • Ferdinand von Siemens
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    Empirical research suggests that - rather than improving incentives - exerting control can reduce workers' performance by eroding motivation. The present paper shows that intention-based reciprocity can cause such motivational crowding-out if individuals differ in their propensity for reciprocity and preferences are private information. Not being controlled might then be considered to be kind, because not everybody reciprocates not being controlled with high effort. This argument stands in contrast to existing theoretical wisdom on motivational crowding-out that is primarily based on signaling models.

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    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2011/wp-cesifo-2011-08/cesifo1_wp3553.pdf
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    Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 3553.

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    Date of creation: 2011
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    Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_3553
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    1. Ellingsen, Tore & Johannesson, Magnus, 2006. "Pride and Prejudice: The Human Side of Incentive Theory," CEPR Discussion Papers 5768, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Ariely, Dan & Kamenica, Emir & Prelec, Drazen, 2008. "Man's search for meaning: The case of Legos," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 67(3-4), pages 671-677, September.
    3. Schnedler, Wendelin & Vadovic, Radovan, 2007. "Legitimacy of Control," Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications 07-61, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim;Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim.
    4. Suvorov, Anton & van de Ven, Jeroen, 2009. "Discretionary rewards as a feedback mechanism," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 665-681, November.
    5. Marie-Claire Villeval & David Dickinson, 2004. "Does Monitoring Decrease Work Effort ? The Complementarity Between Agency and Crowding-Out Theories," Working Papers 0409, Groupe d'Analyse et de Théorie Economique (GATE), Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), Université Lyon 2, Ecole Normale Supérieure.
    6. Pierpaolo Battigalli & Martin Dufwenberg, 2007. "Guilt in Games," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(2), pages 170-176, May.
    7. repec:dgr:uvatin:20100101 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Englmaier, Florian & Leider, Stephen, 2012. "Contractual and organizational structure with reciprocal agents," Munich Reprints in Economics 22010, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
    9. David Dickinson & Marie-Claire Villeval, 2004. "Does Monitoring Decrease Work Effort? The Complementarity Between Agency and Crowding-Out Theories," Post-Print halshs-00175010, HAL.
    10. Dirk Sliwka, 2007. "Trust as a Signal of a Social Norm and the Hidden Costs of Incentive Schemes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(3), pages 999-1012, June.
    11. von Siemens, Ferdinand A., 2009. "Bargaining under incomplete information, fairness, and the hold-up problem," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 486-494, August.
    12. Doruk Iris & Luís Santos-Pinto, 2008. "Tacit Collusion under Fairness and Reciprocity," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 09.03, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP.
    13. David Dickinson & Marie-Claire Villeval, 2004. "Does Monitoring Decrease Work Effort ? The Complementarity Between Agency and Crowding-Out Theorie," Post-Print halshs-00180112, HAL.
    14. Frey, Bruno S & Jegen, Reto, 2001. " Motivation Crowding Theory," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(5), pages 589-611, December.
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