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On the role of endowment heterogeneity and ambiguity for conditional cooperation

  • Felix Ebeling

Conditional cooperation (CC) is one of the most persistent behaviors in charitable giving. The laboratory experiment presented in this paper is designed to explore two questions: First, whether heterogeneous endowments of donors affect conditional cooperative giving. Second, whether potential donors exploit ambiguity about other donors’ endowments in a self-serving manner to justify lower giving. We find that heterogeneous endowments affect giving in a way that suggests individuals concern for equality of donors’ earnings after giving. Furthermore, the results do not confirm the exploitation of ambiguity about other donors’ endowments. Individuals do not bias beliefs about other donors’ endowments in a self-serving manner to justify lower giving.

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Paper provided by University of Cologne, Department of Economics in its series Working Paper Series in Economics with number 58.

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Date of creation: 05 Feb 2013
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Handle: RePEc:kls:series:0058
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  1. Sadrieh, Abdolkarim & Verbon, Harrie A.A., 2006. "Inequality, cooperation, and growth: An experimental study," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(5), pages 1197-1222, July.
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  6. Michael R. Ransom & Gordon B. Dahl, 1999. "Does Where You Stand Depend on Where You Sit? Tithing Donations and Self-Serving Beliefs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(4), pages 703-727, September.
  7. S. Dellavigna., 2011. "Psychology and Economics: Evidence from the Field," VOPROSY ECONOMIKI, N.P. Redaktsiya zhurnala "Voprosy Economiki", vol. 5.
  8. Linda Babcock & George Loewenstein, 1997. "Explaining Bargaining Impasse: The Role of Self-Serving Biases," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(1), pages 109-126, Winter.
  9. Jason Dana & Roberto Weber & Jason Kuang, 2007. "Exploiting moral wiggle room: experiments demonstrating an illusory preference for fairness," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 33(1), pages 67-80, October.
  10. Selten, Reinhard & Ockenfels, Axel, 1998. "An experimental solidarity game," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 517-539, March.
  11. Nikiforakis, Nikos & Noussair, Charles N. & Wilkening, Tom, 2012. "Normative conflict and feuds: The limits of self-enforcement," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(9-10), pages 797-807.
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