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The endogenous nature of social preferences

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  • Smith, John

Abstract

This paper presents evidence which challenges the view that techniques which are designed to measure the social preferences of subjects can always be accomplished in a nonintrusive manner. We find evidence that such measurements can influence the preferences which they are designed to measure. Researchers often measure social preferences by posing a series of dictator game allocation decisions; we use a particular technique, Social Value Orientation (SVO). In our experiment we vary the order of the SVO measurement and a lager stakes dictator game. We find that subjects with prosocial preferences act even more prosocially when the SVO measurement is administered first, whereas those with selfish preferences are unaffected by the order of the measurement. Additionally, we find evidence that this difference is driven by the presence of choices involving the size of surplus.

Suggested Citation

  • Smith, John, 2009. "The endogenous nature of social preferences," MPRA Paper 16599, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:16599
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Libman, Alexander, 2012. "Перераспределительные Конфликты И Факторы Культуры В Новой Политической Экономии [Redistributive Conflicts and Culture in the New Political Economy]," MPRA Paper 48192, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Other-Regarding Preferences; Social Value Orientation; Dictator Game;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy; Intergenerational Transfers
    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior

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