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Strategic Ethics: Altruism without the Other-Regarding Confound

Author

Listed:
  • Giuseppe Attanasi

    () (BETA - Bureau d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - UNISTRA - Université de Strasbourg - UL - Université de Lorraine - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

  • Kene Boun My

    (BETA - Bureau d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - UNISTRA - Université de Strasbourg - UL - Université de Lorraine - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

  • Nikolaos Georgantzis

    () (BSB - Burgundy School of Business (BSB) - Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Dijon Bourgogne (ESC))

  • Miguel Ginés

    (Universitat Jaume I)

Abstract

In a two-stage investment-effort game, we model altruistic investment in another agent's capacity to benefit from synergies between the two agents' efforts. We conduct the theoretical analysis of the game by assuming that agents who invest in others have no direct utility from their giving behavior, i.e., without considering other-regarding preferences. Results of a laboratory experiment confirm our behavioral prediction that, for a low enough investment cost, subjects coordinate on a positive complementarity-building investment, which in turn boosts their effort in the second stage. The latter increases in both own and others' complementarity-building investment, as predicted by our model. All this holds independently of subjects' risk and inequity aversion.

Suggested Citation

  • Giuseppe Attanasi & Kene Boun My & Nikolaos Georgantzis & Miguel Ginés, 2019. "Strategic Ethics: Altruism without the Other-Regarding Confound," Post-Print hal-02512373, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:journl:hal-02512373
    DOI: 10.3917/reco.706.0967
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://hal.univ-lorraine.fr/hal-02512373
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    complementarity-building investment; strategic complementarities; altruism inequity; aversion risk aversion;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • C73 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Stochastic and Dynamic Games; Evolutionary Games
    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy; Intergenerational Transfers

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