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Ingratiation and Favoritism: Experimental Evidence

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Abstract

We provide experimental evidence of worker's ingratiation by opinion conformity and of managers' discrimination in favor of workers with whom they share similar opinions. In our Baseline, managers can observe both workers' performance at a task and opinions before assigning unequal payoffs. In the Ingratiation treatment, workers can change their opinion after learning that held by manager. In the Random treatment, workers can also change opinion but payoffs are assigned randomly, which gives a measure of non-strategic opinion conformism. We find evidence of high ingratiation indices, as overall, ingratiation is effective. Indeed, managers rewards opinion conformity, and even more so when opinions cannot be manipulated. Additional treatments reveal that ingratiation is cost sensitive and that the introduction of performance pay for managers as well as a less noisy measure of performance increase the role of relative performance in the assignment of payoffs, without eliminating the reward of opinion conformity

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  • Stéphane Robin & Agnieszka Rusinowska & Marie-Claire Villeval, 2012. "Ingratiation and Favoritism: Experimental Evidence," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne 12032, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne.
  • Handle: RePEc:mse:cesdoc:12032
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    File URL: ftp://mse.univ-paris1.fr/pub/mse/CES2012/12032.pdf
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    1. Blundell, Richard & Bond, Stephen, 1998. "Initial conditions and moment restrictions in dynamic panel data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, pages 115-143.
    2. Yair Mundlak, 1961. "Empirical Production Function Free of Management Bias," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 43(1), pages 44-56.
    3. James Levinsohn & Amil Petrin, 2003. "Estimating Production Functions Using Inputs to Control for Unobservables," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(2), pages 317-341.
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    Cited by:

    1. Karakostas, Alexandros & Zizzo, Daniel John, 2016. "Compliance and the power of authority," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 124(C), pages 67-80.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Ingratiation; opinion conformity; favoritism; discrimination; social distance; experiment;

    JEL classification:

    • C7 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory
    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • D86 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Economics of Contract Law
    • M51 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Firm Employment Decisions; Promotions

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