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Bringing the Four-Eyes-Principle to the Lab


  • Schickora, Jan Theodor


The ‘Four-Eyes-Principle’ is considered as one of the most potent measures against corruption although it lacks both theoretical and empirical justification. We show in a laboratory experiment using a standard corruption game that introducing the 4EP increases corrupt behaviour, casting doubt on its usefulness as a general recommendation. Combining data on final choices with observations on the decision making processes in teams, including a content analysis of exchanged messages, provides insights into the dynamics of team decision making and shows that the individual profit maximizing motive dominates group decision making and crowds out altruistic arguments.

Suggested Citation

  • Schickora, Jan Theodor, 2011. "Bringing the Four-Eyes-Principle to the Lab," Discussion Papers in Economics 12160, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:lmu:muenec:12160

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    Cited by:

    1. Abbink, Klaus & Dasgupta, Utteeyo & Gangadharan, Lata & Jain, Tarun, 2014. "Letting the briber go free: An experiment on mitigating harassment bribes," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 111(C), pages 17-28.

    More about this item


    Corruption; Laboratory Experiments; Group Decision Making;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption

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