The Effect of Group Identity in an Investment Game
The present research experimentally examines the influence of group identity on trust behavior in an investment game. In one treatment, group identity is manipulated only through the creation of artificial (minimal) groups. In other treatments group members are additionally related by outcome interdependence established in a prior public goods game. In moving from the standard investment game (where no group identity is prompted) to minimal group identity to two-dimensional group identity, we find no significant differences in trust decisions. However, trust is significantly positively correlated with contribution decisions. This suggests that cooperative attitudes are idiosyncratic preferences, which are not affected by the creation of an arbitrary group identity.
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