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Managing Moral Motivations

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  • Lanse Minkler

    (University of Connecticut)

Abstract

Firms confront three problems: (1) shirking (sub-optimal provision of effort), (2) smooth transfer of knowledge, and (3) eliciting new knowledge. The motivations possessed by firm members are four: (a) instrumental rationality (i.e., self-interest), (b) moral motivations and integrity, (c) intrinsic motivations, and (d) fairness motivations. The trick for the firm is to manage motivations in a way that solves its particular problems. The purpose of this paper is to provide the foundations for moral motivations and moral integrity, and to discuss the kinds of problems that they can and cannot solve, particularly in context of the complex motivational mix.

Suggested Citation

  • Lanse Minkler, 2003. "Managing Moral Motivations," Working papers 2003-06, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:uct:uconnp:2003-06
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Ernst Fehr & Klaus M. Schmidt, 1999. "A Theory of Fairness, Competition, and Cooperation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 817-868.
    2. Canice Prendergast, 1999. "The Provision of Incentives in Firms," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(1), pages 7-63, March.
    3. Margit Osterloh & Bruno S. Frey, 2000. "Motivation, Knowledge Transfer, and Organizational Forms," Organization Science, INFORMS, vol. 11(5), pages 538-550, October.
    4. James Konow, 2000. "Fair Shares: Accountability and Cognitive Dissonance in Allocation Decisions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 1072-1091, September.
    5. Kahneman, Daniel & Knetsch, Jack L & Thaler, Richard, 1986. "Fairness as a Constraint on Profit Seeking: Entitlements in the Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 728-741, September.
    6. Margit Osterloh & Jetta Frost & Bruno Frey, 2002. "The Dynamics of Motivation in New Organizational Forms," International Journal of the Economics of Business, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(1), pages 61-77.
    7. Minkler, Alanson P, 1993. "The Problem with Dispersed Knowledge: Firms in Theory and Practice," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(4), pages 569-587.
    8. Konow, James, 1996. "A positive theory of economic fairness," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 13-35, October.
    9. Daniel S. Nagin & James B. Rebitzer & Seth Sanders & Lowell J. Taylor, 2002. "Monitoring, Motivation, and Management: The Determinants of Opportunistic Behavior in a Field Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(4), pages 850-873, September.
    10. Rabin, Matthew, 1993. "Incorporating Fairness into Game Theory and Economics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(5), pages 1281-1302, December.
    11. Minkler, Alanson P., 1993. "Knowledge and internal organization," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 17-30, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Martin, Ludivine, 2007. "The impact of technological changes on incentives and motivations to work hard," IRISS Working Paper Series 2007-15, IRISS at CEPS/INSTEAD.
    2. Dan Ofori & Jocelyn Sackey, 2010. "Assessing Social Capital for Organisational Performance: Initial Exploratory Insights From Ghana," Organizations and Markets in Emerging Economies, Faculty of Economics, Vilnius University, vol. 1(2).
    3. Fabio Sabatini, 2006. "Does Social Capital Improve Labour Productivity in Small and Medium Enterprises," Working Papers 92, University of Rome La Sapienza, Department of Public Economics.

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