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A survey of economic theories and field evidence on pro-social behavior

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  • Stephan Meier

Abstract

In recent years, a large number of economic theories have evolved to explain people’s pro-social behavior and the variation in their respective behavior. This paper surveys economic theories on pro-social behavior and presents evidence — mainly from the field — testing these theories. In addition, the survey emphasizes that institutional environment might significantly interact with pro-social preferences and explain some of the variation in observed pro-social behavior.

Suggested Citation

  • Stephan Meier, 2006. "A survey of economic theories and field evidence on pro-social behavior," Working Papers 06-6, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedbwp:06-6
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Andreoni, James, 1990. "Impure Altruism and Donations to Public Goods: A Theory of Warm-Glow Giving?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(401), pages 464-477, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Nicola Lacetera & Mario Macis & Robert Slonim, 2011. "Rewarding Altruism? A Natural Field Experiment," Working Papers 2011-010, Becker Friedman Institute for Research In Economics.
    2. Jesper Roine & Daniel Waldenström, 2012. "On The Role Of Capital Gains In Swedish Income Inequality," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, pages 569-587.
    3. Drevs, Florian & Gebele, Christoph & Tscheulin, Dieter K., 2014. "The patient perspective of clinical training—An empirical study about patient motives to participate," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 118(1), pages 74-83.
    4. Lorenz Goette & Alois Stutzer, 2008. "Blood donations and incentives: evidence from a field experiment," Working Papers 08-3, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
    5. Elisabeth Gsottbauer & Jeroen Bergh, 2011. "Environmental Policy Theory Given Bounded Rationality and Other-regarding Preferences," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, pages 263-304.
    6. Lacetera, Nicola & Macis, Mario & Slonim, Robert, 2009. "Will There Be Blood? Incentives and Substitution Effects in Pro-social Behavior," IZA Discussion Papers 4567, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. Aidin Hajikhameneh & Jared Rubin, 2017. "Reputation and Multilateral Punishment under Uncertainty," Working Papers 17-14, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
    8. Lorenz Goette & David Huffman & Stephan Meier & Matthias Sutter, 2010. "Group Membership, Competition, and Altruistic versus Antisocial Punishment: Evidence from Randomly Assigned Army Groups," Working Papers 2010-24, Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck.
    9. repec:ehl:lserod:33114 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Dan Ariely & Anat Bracha & Stephan Meier, 2009. "Doing Good or Doing Well? Image Motivation and Monetary Incentives in Behaving Prosocially," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 544-555.
    11. Bügelmayer, Elisabeth & Katharina Spiess, C., 2014. "Spite and cognitive skills in preschoolers," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 154-167.
    12. Bohnet, Iris & Meier, Stephan, 2005. "Deciding to Distrust," Working Paper Series rwp05-049, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
    13. Holmås, Tor Helge & Kjerstad, Egil & Lurås, Hilde & Straume, Odd Rune, 2010. "Does monetary punishment crowd out pro-social motivation? A natural experiment on hospital length of stay," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 75(2), pages 261-267, August.
    14. Bengtsson, Niklas & Engström, Per, 2011. "Control and Efficiency in the Nonprofit Sector Evidence from a Randomized Policy Experiment," Working Paper Series 2011:8, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
    15. Stephan Meier, 2007. "Do Subsidies Increase Charitable Giving in the Long Run? Matching Donations in a Field Experiment," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 5(6), pages 1203-1222, December.
    16. Tor Helge Holmås & Egil Kjerstad & Hilde Lurås & Odd Rune Straume, 2008. "Does monetary punishment crowd out pro-social motivation? The case of hospital bed-blocking," NIPE Working Papers 17/2008, NIPE - Universidade do Minho.
    17. Yuki Sakura Kristi & Mohamad Fahmi & Martin Daniel Siyaranamual, 2016. "Pro-social Behavior of Bandung Schoolchildren:The Effects of Competition and Socioeconomic Status," Working Papers in Economics and Development Studies (WoPEDS) 201604, Department of Economics, Padjadjaran University, revised Dec 2016.

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    Keywords

    Human behavior ; Interpersonal relations;

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