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Inequity Aversion in Tournament

  • Dominique Demougin
  • Claude Fluet

We consider the cost of providing incentives through tournaments when workers are inequity averse and performance evaluation is costly. The principal never benefits from empathy between the workers, but he may benefit from their propensity for envy depending on the costs of assessing performance. More envious employees are preferred when these costs are high, less envious ones when they are low. Nous analysons le coût des mécanismes incitatifs de type tournois lorsque les travailleurs ont de l'aversion pour l'iniquité et que l'évaluation des performances est coûteuse. L'empathie entre les travailleurs n'est jamais bénéfique pour le principal, mais une propension à l'envie peut être avantageuse selon l'importance des coûts associés à la mesure de la performance. Lorsque ces coûts sont élevés, le principal préférerait des travailleurs plus envieux; à l'inverse, il préférerait qu'ils le soient moins si ces coûts sont faibles.

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Paper provided by CIRANO in its series CIRANO Working Papers with number 2003s-18.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: 01 Apr 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cir:cirwor:2003s-18
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  1. Clark, Andrew E. & Oswald, Andrew J., 1996. "Satisfaction and comparison income," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(3), pages 359-381, September.
  2. Fehr, Ernst & Schmidt, Klaus M., 1998. "A Theory of Fairness, Competition and Cooperation," CEPR Discussion Papers 1812, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  4. Grund, Christian & Sliwka, Dirk, 2002. "Envy and Compassion in Tournaments," IZA Discussion Papers 647, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  6. 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.
  7. Englmaier, Florian & Achim Wambach, 2003. "Contracts and Inequity Aversion," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2003 74, Royal Economic Society.
  8. Hvide, H.K., 1999. "Tournament Rewards and Risk Taking," Papers 32-99, Tel Aviv.
  9. Gibbons, Robert & Waldman, Michael, 1999. "Careers in organizations: Theory and evidence," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 36, pages 2373-2437 Elsevier.
  10. Baker, George P & Jensen, Michael C & Murphy, Kevin J, 1988. " Compensation and Incentives: Practice vs. Theory," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 43(3), pages 593-616, July.
  11. Levine, David I., 1991. "Cohesiveness, productivity, and wage dispersion," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 237-255, March.
  12. Krakel, Matthias, 2000. "Relative deprivation in rank-order tournaments," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(4), pages 385-407, July.
  13. Lazear, Edward P, 1989. "Pay Equality and Industrial Politics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(3), pages 561-80, June.
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  15. Demougin, Dominique & Fluet, Claude, 2001. "Monitoring versus incentives," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(9), pages 1741-1764, October.
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