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Deception Under Time Pressure: Conscious Decision or a Problem of Awareness?

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  • Kai A. Konrad
  • Tim Lohse
  • Sven A. Simon

Abstract

Time is a crucial determinant of deception, since some misreporting opportunities come as a surprise and require an intuitive decision while others allow for extensive reflection time. To be able to pursue a deceptive strategy, however, a subject must be aware of the misreporting opportunity. This paper provides experimental evidence on the role of the time dimension for dishonest decision-making and for the cognition process of the chance to deceive. We conduct a laboratory experiment of self-serving deceptive behavior which combines two exogenously varied levels of reflection time with a cognition process about the deception opportunity. We find that time pressure leads to more honesty compared to sufficient contemplation time. More importantly, decomposing misreporting into its two components, i.e., the cognition process of the misreporting opportunity and the conscious decision to misreport, reveals that more reflection time increases awareness of the misreporting opportunity. However, more time has no effect on the conscious decision of whether to misreport or not.

Suggested Citation

  • Kai A. Konrad & Tim Lohse & Sven A. Simon, 2017. "Deception Under Time Pressure: Conscious Decision or a Problem of Awareness?," CESifo Working Paper Series 6671, CESifo.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_6671
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Capraro, Valerio & Schulz, Jonathan & Rand, David G., 2019. "Time pressure and honesty in a deception game," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 79(C), pages 93-99.
    2. Jantsje M. Mol & Eline C. M. Heijden & Jan J. M. Potters, 2020. "(Not) alone in the world: Cheating in the presence of a virtual observer," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 23(4), pages 961-978, December.
    3. Lohse, Tim & Simon, Sven A., 2021. "Compliance in teams – Implications of joint decisions and shared consequences," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 94(C).
    4. Alain Cohn & Tobias Gesche & Michel André Maréchal, 2022. "Honesty in the Digital Age," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 68(2), pages 827-845, February.
    5. Kai A. Konrad & Tim Lohse & Sven A. Simon, 2021. "Pecunia non olet: on the self-selection into (dis)honest earning opportunities," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 24(4), pages 1105-1130, December.
    6. Valerio Capraro, 2018. "Gender differences in lying in sender-receiver games: A meta-analysis," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 13(4), pages 345-355, July.
    7. repec:cup:judgdm:v:13:y:2018:i:4:p:345-355 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Niu, Xiaofei & Li, Jianbiao, 2019. "How Time Constraint Affects the Disposition Effect?," EconStor Preprints 194618, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics.
    9. Chua, Scott Lee & Chang, Jessica & Riambau, Guillem, 2022. "Lying behavior when payoffs are shared with charity: Experimental evidence," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 90(C).
    10. Dickinson, David L & McEvoy, David M, 2021. "Further from the truth: The impact of moving from in-person to online settings on dishonest behavior," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 90(C).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    time pressure; awareness; deception; contemplation; cognitive process; laboratory experiment;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law

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