IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/kls/series/0090.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Sharing Guilt: How Better Access to Information May Backfire

Author

Listed:
  • Roman Inderst
  • Kiryl Khalmetski
  • Axel Ockenfels

Abstract

We provide laboratory evidence that the attribution of guilt for disappointed trust is shared between the players whose choices eventually contributed to this disappointment (including the disappointed player herself). We refer to this as "shared guilt" and present a model that captures the phenomenon, and which is consistent with various previous findings. We also discuss potential policy implications.

Suggested Citation

  • Roman Inderst & Kiryl Khalmetski & Axel Ockenfels, 2017. "Sharing Guilt: How Better Access to Information May Backfire," Working Paper Series in Economics 90, University of Cologne, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:kls:series:0090
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://ockenfels.uni-koeln.de/fileadmin/wiso_fak/stawi-ockenfels/pdf/wp_series_download/wp0090.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Falk, Armin & Szech, Nora, 2013. "Organizations, diffused pivotality and immoral outcomes," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Economics of Change SP II 2013-303, WZB Berlin Social Science Center.
    2. Gary Charness & Matthew Rabin, 2002. "Understanding Social Preferences with Simple Tests," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(3), pages 817-869.
    3. Ernst Fehr & Klaus M. Schmidt, 1999. "A Theory of Fairness, Competition, and Cooperation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 817-868.
    4. Gary Charness & Ramon Cobo-Reyes & Natalia Jimenez & Juan A. Lacomba & Francisco Lagos, 2012. "The Hidden Advantage of Delegation: Pareto Improvements in a Gift Exchange Game," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(5), pages 2358-2379, August.
    5. Charness, Gary & Dufwenberg, Martin, 2003. "Promises & Partnership," Research Papers in Economics 2003:3, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
    6. Woods, Daniel & Servátka, Maroš, 2016. "Testing psychological forward induction and the updating of beliefs in the lost wallet game," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 116-125.
    7. Charles Bellemare & Alexander Sebald & Martin Strobel, 2011. "Measuring the willingness to pay to avoid guilt: estimation using equilibrium and stated belief models," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 26(3), pages 437-453, April.
    8. Ben Gillen & Erik Snowberg & Leeat Yariv, 2015. "Experimenting with Measurement Error: Techniques with Applications to the Caltech Cohort Study," NBER Working Papers 21517, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Ellingsen, Tore & Johannesson, Magnus & Tjøtta, Sigve & Torsvik, Gaute, 2010. "Testing guilt aversion," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 95-107, January.
    10. Bartling, Björn & Fischbacher, Urs & Schudy, Simeon, 2015. "Pivotality and responsibility attribution in sequential voting," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 128(C), pages 133-139.
    11. David K. Levine, 1998. "Modeling Altruism and Spitefulness in Experiment," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 1(3), pages 593-622, July.
    12. Ben Greiner, 2015. "Subject pool recruitment procedures: organizing experiments with ORSEE," Journal of the Economic Science Association, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 1(1), pages 114-125, July.
    13. Khalmetski, Kiryl & Ockenfels, Axel & Werner, Peter, 2015. "Surprising gifts: Theory and laboratory evidence," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 159(PA), pages 163-208.
    14. James C. Cox & Daniel Friedman & Vjollca Sadiraj, 2008. "Revealed Altruism," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 76(1), pages 31-69, January.
    15. Daylian M. Cain & George Loewenstein & Don A. Moore, 2005. "The Dirt on Coming Clean: Perverse Effects of Disclosing Conflicts of Interest," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 34(1), pages 1-25, January.
    16. Uri Gneezy, 2005. "Deception: The Role of Consequences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 384-394, March.
    17. Giuseppe Attanasi & Pierpaolo Battigalli & Elena Manzoni, 2016. "Incomplete-Information Models of Guilt Aversion in the Trust Game," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 62(3), pages 648-667, March.
    18. Regine Oexl & Zachary Grossman, 2013. "Shifting the blame to a powerless intermediary," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 16(3), pages 306-312, September.
    19. Navin Kartik, 2009. "Strategic Communication with Lying Costs," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(4), pages 1359-1395.
    20. Maroš Servátka & Radovan Vadovič, 2009. "Unequal outside options in the lost wallet game," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 29(4), pages 2870-2883.
    21. Charness, Gary, 2000. "Responsibility and effort in an experimental labor market," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 375-384, July.
    22. Battigalli, Pierpaolo & Dufwenberg, Martin, 2009. "Dynamic psychological games," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(1), pages 1-35, January.
    23. Kawagoe, Toshiji & Narita, Yusuke, 2014. "Guilt aversion revisited: An experimental test of a new model," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 102(C), pages 1-9.
    24. Dufwenberg, Martin & Kirchsteiger, Georg, 2004. "A theory of sequential reciprocity," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 268-298, May.
    25. Gary Bolton & Ben Greiner & Axel Ockenfels, 2013. "Engineering Trust: Reciprocity in the Production of Reputation Information," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 59(2), pages 265-285, January.
    26. Gary Charness & Martin Dufwenberg, 2006. "Promises and Partnership," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 74(6), pages 1579-1601, November.
    27. Reuben, Ernesto & Sapienza, Paola & Zingales, Luigi, 2009. "Is mistrust self-fulfilling?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 104(2), pages 89-91, August.
    28. James Cox & Maroš Servátka & Radovan Vadovič, 2010. "Saliency of outside options in the lost wallet game," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 13(1), pages 66-74, March.
    29. Axel Ockenfels & Gary E. Bolton, 2000. "ERC: A Theory of Equity, Reciprocity, and Competition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(1), pages 166-193, March.
    30. Orsola Garofalo & Christina Rott, 2018. "Shifting Blame? Experimental Evidence of Delegating Communication," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 64(8), pages 3911-3925, August.
    31. Jordi Brandts & Enrique Fatas & Francisco Lagos, 2005. "Relative Position, Prices of Sacrifice and Reciprocity: An Experimental Study Using Individual Decisions," Working Papers 256, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
    32. Santosh Anagol & Hugh Hoikwang Kim, 2012. "The Impact of Shrouded Fees: Evidence from a Natural Experiment in the Indian Mutual Funds Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 576-593, February.
    33. Fabian Duarte & Justine S. Hastings, 2012. "Fettered Consumers and Sophisticated Firms: Evidence from Mexico's Privatized Social Security Market," NBER Working Papers 18582, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    34. Fershtman, Chaim & Gneezy, Uri, 2001. "Strategic Delegation: An Experiment," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 32(2), pages 352-368, Summer.
    35. Lucas C. Coffman, 2011. "Intermediation Reduces Punishment (and Reward)," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 77-106, November.
    36. Christoph Vanberg, 2008. "Why Do People Keep Their Promises? An Experimental Test of Two Explanations -super-1," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 76(6), pages 1467-1480, November.
    37. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
    38. Dufwenberg, Martin & Gneezy, Uri, 2000. "Measuring Beliefs in an Experimental Lost Wallet Game," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 163-182, February.
    39. Beck, Adrian & Kerschbamer, Rudolf & Qiu, Jianying & Sutter, Matthias, 2013. "Shaping beliefs in experimental markets for expert services: Guilt aversion and the impact of promises and money-burning options," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 81(C), pages 145-164.
    40. Jordi Brandts & Enrique Fatas & Ernan Haruvy & Francisco Lagos, 2015. "The impact of relative position and returns on sacrifice and reciprocity: an experimental study using individual decisions," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 45(3), pages 489-511, October.
    41. Sandro Ambuehl & Axel Ockenfels & Colin Stewart, 2018. "Attention and Selection Effects," Working Papers tecipa-607, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
    42. Khalmetski, Kiryl, 2016. "Testing guilt aversion with an exogenous shift in beliefs," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 97(C), pages 110-119.
    43. John R. Hamman & George Loewenstein & Roberto A. Weber, 2010. "Self-Interest through Delegation: An Additional Rationale for the Principal-Agent Relationship," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(4), pages 1826-1846, September.
    44. Stiglitz, Joseph E & Weiss, Andrew, 1981. "Credit Rationing in Markets with Imperfect Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(3), pages 393-410, June.
    45. Tore Ellingsen & Magnus Johannesson, 2008. "Pride and Prejudice: The Human Side of Incentive Theory," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 990-1008, June.
    46. J. Yannis Bakos, 1997. "Reducing Buyer Search Costs: Implications for Electronic Marketplaces," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 43(12), pages 1676-1692, December.
    47. Roman Inderst & Marco Ottaviani, 2012. "Competition through Commissions and Kickbacks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(2), pages 780-809, April.
    48. Geanakoplos, John & Pearce, David & Stacchetti, Ennio, 1989. "Psychological games and sequential rationality," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 60-79, March.
    49. Björn Bartling & Urs Fischbacher, 2012. "Shifting the Blame: On Delegation and Responsibility," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 79(1), pages 67-87.
    50. Daylian M. Cain & George Loewenstein & Don A. Moore, 2011. "When Sunlight Fails to Disinfect: Understanding the Perverse Effects of Disclosing Conflicts of Interest," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 37(5), pages 836-857.
    51. Gneezy, Uri & Rockenbach, Bettina & Serra-Garcia, Marta, 2013. "Measuring lying aversion," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 293-300.
    52. Pierpaolo Battigalli & Martin Dufwenberg, 2007. "Guilt in Games," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(2), pages 170-176, May.
    53. George A. Akerlof, 1970. "The Market for "Lemons": Quality Uncertainty and the Market Mechanism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 84(3), pages 488-500.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Bauer, Kevin & Gill, Andrej, 2021. "Mirror, mirror on the wall: Machine predictions and self-fulfilling prophecies," SAFE Working Paper Series 313, Leibniz Institute for Financial Research SAFE.
    2. Giuseppe Attanasi & Claire Rimbaud & Marie Villeval, 2022. "Guilt Aversion in (New) Games: Does Partners' Vulnerability Matter?," Working Papers halshs-03620418, HAL.
    3. Claire Rimbaud & Alice Soldà, 2021. "Avoiding the Cost of your Conscience: Belief Dependent Preferences and Information Acquisition," Working Papers halshs-03325963, HAL.
    4. Roman Inderst & Eftichios Sartzetakis & Anastasios Xepapadeas, 2021. "Competition and Co-Operation when Consumers' Sustainability Preferences Depend on Social Norms," DEOS Working Papers 2109, Athens University of Economics and Business.
    5. Lucas C. Coffman & Alexander Gotthard-Real, 2019. "Moral Perceptions of Advised Actions," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 65(8), pages 3904-3927, August.
    6. Sanjit Dhami & Mengxing Wei & Ali al-Nowaihi, 2021. "Classical and Belief-Based Gift Exchange Models: Theory and Evidence," CESifo Working Paper Series 8992, CESifo.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Khalmetski, Kiryl, 2016. "Testing guilt aversion with an exogenous shift in beliefs," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 97(C), pages 110-119.
    2. Woods, Daniel & Servátka, Maroš, 2016. "Testing psychological forward induction and the updating of beliefs in the lost wallet game," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 116-125.
    3. Giuseppe Attanasi & Claire Rimbaud & Marie Claire Villeval, 2022. "Guilt Aversion in (New) Games:Does Partners’ Vulnerability Matter?," Working Papers 2203, Groupe d'Analyse et de Théorie Economique Lyon St-Étienne (GATE Lyon St-Étienne), Université de Lyon.
    4. Eric Cardella, 2016. "Exploiting the guilt aversion of others: do agents do it and is it effective?," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 80(4), pages 523-560, April.
    5. Peeters, Ronald & Vorsatz, Marc, 2021. "Simple guilt and cooperation," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 82(C).
    6. Riccardo Ghidoni & Matteo Ploner, 2014. "When do the Expectations of Others Matter? An Experiment on Distributional Justice and Guilt Aversion," CEEL Working Papers 1403, Cognitive and Experimental Economics Laboratory, Department of Economics, University of Trento, Italia.
    7. Hauge, Karen Evelyn, 2016. "Generosity and guilt: The role of beliefs and moral standards of others," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 35-43.
    8. Giuseppe Attanasi & Claire Rimbaud & Marie-Claire Villeval, 2020. "Guilt Aversion in (New) Games: the Role of Vulnerability," GREDEG Working Papers 2020-15, Groupe de REcherche en Droit, Economie, Gestion (GREDEG CNRS), Université Côte d'Azur, France.
    9. Ederer, Florian & Stremitzer, Alexander, 2017. "Promises and expectations," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 161-178.
    10. Jiabin Wu, 2018. "Indirect higher order beliefs and cooperation," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 21(4), pages 858-876, December.
    11. Khalmetski, Kiryl & Ockenfels, Axel & Werner, Peter, 2015. "Surprising gifts: Theory and laboratory evidence," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 159(PA), pages 163-208.
    12. Cartwright, Edward, 2019. "A survey of belief-based guilt aversion in trust and dictator games," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 167(C), pages 430-444.
    13. Attanasi, Giuseppe & Rimbaud, Claire & Villeval, Marie Claire, 2019. "Embezzlement and guilt aversion," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 167(C), pages 409-429.
    14. Tobias Regner & Gerhard Riener, 2011. "Motivational Cherry Picking," Jena Economic Research Papers 2011-029, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
    15. Pikulina, Elena S. & Tergiman, Chloe, 2020. "Preferences for power," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 185(C).
    16. Daniel Woods & Maroš Servátka, 2019. "Nice to you, nicer to me: Does self-serving generosity diminish the reciprocal response?," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 22(2), pages 506-529, June.
    17. Zachary Grossman, 2014. "Strategic Ignorance and the Robustness of Social Preferences," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 60(11), pages 2659-2665, November.
    18. Charles Bellemare & Alexander Sebald & Sigrid Suetens, 2018. "Heterogeneous guilt sensitivities and incentive effects," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 21(2), pages 316-336, June.
    19. Behnk, Sascha & Barreda-Tarrazona, Iván & García-Gallego, Aurora, 2014. "The role of ex post transparency in information transmission—An experiment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 101(C), pages 45-64.
    20. Pierpaolo Battigalli & Martin Dufwenberg, 2020. "Belief-Dependent Motivations and Psychological Game Theory," CESifo Working Paper Series 8285, CESifo.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Shared guilt; trust; guilt aversion; responsibility diffusion; financial advice;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kls:series:0090. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/swkoede.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Kiryl Khalmetski The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask Kiryl Khalmetski to update the entry or send us the correct address (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/swkoede.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.