IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/tiu/tiucen/641eb9a4-f245-483b-8c01-6994a6cf6ca6.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Pay Enough - Or Don't Pay at All

Author

Listed:
  • Gneezy, U.

    (Tilburg University, Center For Economic Research)

  • Rustichini, A.

    (Tilburg University, Center For Economic Research)

Abstract

Economists usually assume that monetary incentives improve performance, and psychologists claim that the opposite may happen. We present and discuss a set of experiments designed to test these contrasting claims. We found that the effect of monetary compensation on performance was not monotonic. In the treatments in which money was offered, a larger amount yielded a higher performance. However, offering money did not always produce an improvement: subjects who were offered monetary incentives performed more poorly than those who were offered no compensation. Several possible interpretations of the results are discussed.
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Gneezy, U. & Rustichini, A., 1998. "Pay Enough - Or Don't Pay at All," Discussion Paper 1998-57, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:tiu:tiucen:641eb9a4-f245-483b-8c01-6994a6cf6ca6
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://pure.uvt.nl/ws/portalfiles/portal/529037/57.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. George A. Akerlof & Janet L. Yellen, 1990. "The Fair Wage-Effort Hypothesis and Unemployment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(2), pages 255-283.
    2. Akerlof, George A & Yellen, Janet L, 1988. "Fairness and Unemployment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(2), pages 44-49, May.
    3. Frey, Bruno S & Oberholzer-Gee, Felix, 1997. "The Cost of Price Incentives: An Empirical Analysis of Motivation Crowding-Out," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(4), pages 746-755, September.
    4. Smith, Vernon L, 1982. "Microeconomic Systems as an Experimental Science," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(5), pages 923-955, December.
    5. George A. Akerlof, 1982. "Labor Contracts as Partial Gift Exchange," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 97(4), pages 543-569.
    6. Bruno S. Frey, 1994. "How Intrinsic Motivation is Crowded out and in," Rationality and Society, , vol. 6(3), pages 334-352, July.
    7. Frey, Bruno S & Oberholzer-Gee, Felix & Eichenberger, Reiner, 1996. "The Old Lady Visits Your Backyard: A Tale of Morals and Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(6), pages 1297-1313, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    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. Lin, Chung-cheng & Yang, C.C., 2006. "Fine enough or don't fine at all," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 59(2), pages 195-213, February.
    2. Sverre Grepperud & Pål Andreas Pedersen, 2001. "The Crowding-out of Work Ethics," Studies in Economics 0102, School of Economics, University of Kent.
    3. Brandes, Leif & Franck, Egon, 2012. "Social preferences or personal career concerns? Field evidence on positive and negative reciprocity in the workplace," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 33(5), pages 925-939.
    4. Vera Popva, 2010. "What renders financial advisors less treacherous? - On commissions and reciprocity -," Jena Economic Research Papers 2010-036, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
    5. Fernanda Rivas, 2009. "Wage dispersion and workers` effort," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 29(2), pages 788-794.
    6. Omar Al-Ubaydli & John List, 2016. "Field Experiments in Markets," Artefactual Field Experiments j0002, The Field Experiments Website.
    7. Grossmann, Volker, 2002. "Is it rational to internalize the personal norm that one should reciprocate?," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 27-48, February.
    8. Fehr, Ernst & Kirchsteiger, Georg & Riedl, Arno, 1998. "Gift exchange and reciprocity in competitive experimental markets," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 1-34, January.
    9. Uri Gneezy & John A List, 2006. "Putting Behavioral Economics to Work: Testing for Gift Exchange in Labor Markets Using Field Experiments," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 74(5), pages 1365-1384, September.
    10. Rebitzer, James B. & Taylor, Lowell J., 2011. "Extrinsic Rewards and Intrinsic Motives: Standard and Behavioral Approaches to Agency and Labor Markets," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 8, pages 701-772, Elsevier.
    11. Bénédicte Reynaud, 1993. "Les théories de l'équité, fondements d'une approche cognitive du salaire d'efficience," Revue Économique, Programme National Persée, vol. 44(1), pages 5-22.
    12. Fehr, Ernst & Tougareva, Elena & Fischbacher, Urs, 2014. "Do high stakes and competition undermine fair behaviour? Evidence from Russia," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 354-363.
    13. Jeffrey A. Flory & Andreas Leibbrandt & John A. List, 2016. "The Effects of Wage Contracts on Workplace Misbehaviors: Evidence from a Call Center Natural Field Experiment," NBER Working Papers 22342, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Izumi Yokoyama & Takuya Obara, 2017. "Optimal combination of wage cuts and layoffs—the unexpected side effect of a performance-based payment system," IZA Journal of Labor Policy, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 6(1), pages 1-15, December.
    15. Simon Gächter & Daniele Nosenzo & Martin Sefton, 2012. "The Impact of Social Comparisons on Reciprocity," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 114(4), pages 1346-1367, December.
    16. John A. List, 2006. "The Behavioralist Meets the Market: Measuring Social Preferences and Reputation Effects in Actual Transactions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(1), pages 1-37, February.
    17. Kocher, Martin G. & Luhan, Wolfgang J. & Sutter, Matthias, 2012. "Testing a forgotten aspect of Akerlof’s gift exchange hypothesis: Relational contracts with individual and uniform wages," Discussion Papers in Economics 12816, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
    18. Jeffrey Flory & Andreas Leibbrandt & John List, 2016. "Wage Contracts and Workplace Misbehaviors," Natural Field Experiments 00583, The Field Experiments Website.
    19. Charness, Gary & Kuhn, Peter, 2011. "Lab Labor: What Can Labor Economists Learn from the Lab?," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 3, pages 229-330, Elsevier.
    20. Monteiro, Natália P. & Straume, Odd Rune & Valente, Marieta, 2021. "When does remote electronic access (not) boost productivity? Longitudinal evidence from Portugal," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 56(C).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Monetary incentives; performance; motivation; principal-agent;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D1 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior
    • D8 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty
    • D9 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics

    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:tiu:tiucen:641eb9a4-f245-483b-8c01-6994a6cf6ca6. 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: http://center.uvt.nl .

    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: Richard Broekman (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://center.uvt.nl .

    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.