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Group Membership, Team Preferences, and Expectations (A new version of this paper is available as CEEL WP 3-12)

Author

Listed:
  • Francesco Guala

    ()

  • Luigi Mittone

    ()

  • Matteo Ploner

    ()

Abstract

Group membership increases cooperation in social dilemma games, altruistic donation in dictator games, and fair offers in ultimatum games. While the empirical study of group action has grown rapidly over the years, there is little agreement at the theoretical level on exactly why and how group membership changes individual behaviour. According to most theorists, the effect of group framing is channelled primarily via the beliefs of group members, while a dissenting minority identifies changes in preference as the key explanatory mechanism. We report an experiment using the minimal group paradigm and a prisoner�s dilemma with multiple actions, in which we manipulate players� beliefs and show that mutual knowledge of group affiliation is not necessary for group action. Our results question previous empirical findings, refute theories of social norms based on mutual expectations, and support a specific theory of team preferences based on �circumspect reasoning�

Suggested Citation

  • Francesco Guala & Luigi Mittone & Matteo Ploner, 2009. "Group Membership, Team Preferences, and Expectations (A new version of this paper is available as CEEL WP 3-12)," CEEL Working Papers 0906, Cognitive and Experimental Economics Laboratory, Department of Economics, University of Trento, Italia.
  • Handle: RePEc:trn:utwpce:0906
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. David Hugh-Jones & Martin A. Leroch, 2010. "Group Reciprocity," Jena Economic Research Papers 2010-066, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    group identity; team preferences; social dilemmas; experimental economics.;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods

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