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The Effect of Group Identity in an Investment Game

  • Werner Güth

    ()

  • Matteo Ploner
  • Vittoria Levati

    ()

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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Paper provided by Max Planck Institute of Economics, Strategic Interaction Group in its series Papers on Strategic Interaction with number 2005-06.

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Length: 38 pages
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Handle: RePEc:esi:discus:2005-06
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  1. Fehr, Ernst & Kirchsteiger, Georg & Riedl, Arno, 1995. "Gift Exchange and Reciprocity in Competitive Experimental Markets," Economics Series 14, Institute for Advanced Studies.
  2. Gneezy, Uri & Güth, Werner & Verboven, Frank, 1998. "Presents or investments? An experimental analysis," SFB 373 Discussion Papers 1998,56, Humboldt University of Berlin, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes.
  3. Berg Joyce & Dickhaut John & McCabe Kevin, 1995. "Trust, Reciprocity, and Social History," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 122-142, July.
  4. Frey, Bruno S. & Bohnet, Iris, 1997. "Identification in democratic society," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 25-38.
  5. Buchan, Nancy & Croson, Rachel, 2004. "The boundaries of trust: own and others' actions in the US and China," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 55(4), pages 485-504, December.
  6. Werner Güth & Vittoria Levati & Rupert Saugruber, 2005. "Tax morale and (de-)centralization: An experimental study," Public Economics 0511014, EconWPA.
  7. Glaeser, Edward Ludwig & Laibson, David I. & Scheinkman, Jose A. & Soutter, Christine L., 2000. "Measuring Trust," Scholarly Articles 4481497, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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