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Social preferences: Some thoughts from the field

  • John List

This review steps back from the burgeoning economics literature on measuring social preferences and considers more carefully the empirical evidence from the lab and the field. I place the claims from the ardent supporters of the literature into three bins: one for claims that are supported by the data upon closer scrutiny, one for claims that are not supported by the data upon closer scrutiny, and one for claims that may or may not be true. The third set of claims highlights important theoretical and empirical investigations that need to be done to further our understanding of the nature and import of social preferences.

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Paper provided by The Field Experiments Website in its series Artefactual Field Experiments with number 00088.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:feb:artefa:00088
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.fieldexperiments.com

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  1. Carsten Schmidt & Matthias Sutter & Werner Guth, 2002. "Bargaining outside the lab - a newspaper experiment of a three person-ultimatum game," Artefactual Field Experiments 00050, The Field Experiments Website.
  2. John List, 2006. "The behavioralist meets the market: Measuring social preferences and reputation effects in actual transactions," Natural Field Experiments 00300, The Field Experiments Website.
  3. John List & Uri Gneezy, 2006. "Putting behavioral economics to work: Testing for gift exchange in labor markets using field experiments," Natural Field Experiments 00259, The Field Experiments Website.
  4. Todd L. Cherry & Peter Frykblom & Jason F. Shogren, 2002. "Hardnose the Dictator," Working Papers 02-06, Department of Economics, Appalachian State University.
  5. Jeffrey Carpenter & Cristina Connolly & Caitlin Myers, 2008. "Altruistic behavior in a representative dictator experiment," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 11(3), pages 282-298, September.
  6. Camerer, Colin & Weigelt, Keith, 1988. "Experimental Tests of a Sequential Equilibrium Reputation Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(1), pages 1-36, January.
  7. Andreoni, James & Brown, Paul M. & Vesterlund, Lise, 2002. "What Makes an Allocation Fair? Some Experimental Evidence," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 1-24, July.
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