Self-Confidence and Social Interactions
This paper studies the interactions between an individual's self esteem and his social environment in the workplace, at school, and in personal relationships. Because a person generally has only imperfect knowledge of his own abilities, people who derive benefits from his performance (parent, spouse, friend, teacher, manager, etc.) have incentives to manipulate his self confidence. We first study situations where an informed principal chooses an incentive structure, such as offering payments or rewards, delegating a task, or giving encouragement. We show that extrinsic rewards may have hidden costs as stressed by psychologists in that they undermine intrinsic motivation. As a result, they may be only weak reinforcers in the short run, and become negative reinforcers once withdrawn. Similarly, empowerment is likely to increase motivation, while offers of help may create a dependance. More generally, we identify when the hidden costs of rewards are a myth or a reality. We next consider situations where people criticize or downplay the performance of their spouse, child, colleague, or subordinate. We formalize ego bashing as reflecting battles for dominance or authority within the relationship. Finally, we turn to the self presentation strategies of privately informed agents. We study in particular how depressed individuals may engage in self-deprecation as a way of seeking leniency (a lowering of expectancies) or a helping hand' on various obligations.
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|Date of creation:||Dec 1999|
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Web page: http://www.princeton.edu/~ectheory/
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- Benabou, R. & Tirole, J., 2000.
"Self-Confidence: Intrapersonal Strategies,"
209, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Public and International Affairs.
- Roland Benabou & Jean Tirole, 1999. "Self-Confidence: Intrapersonal Strategies," Working Papers 152, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Discussion Papers in Economics..
- Bénabou, Roland & Tirole, Jean, 2000. "Self-Confidence: Intrapersonal Strategies," CEPR Discussion Papers 2580, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- R. Benabou & J. Tirole, 1999. "Self-Confidence: Intrapersonal Strategies," Princeton Economic Theory Papers 00s1, Economics Department, Princeton University.
- Laibson, David, 1997.
"Golden Eggs and Hyperbolic Discounting,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
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Levine's Working Paper Archive
544, David K. Levine.
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- Aghion, Philippe & Tirole, Jean, 1997.
"Formal and Real Authority in Organizations,"
4554125, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Aghion, Philippe & Tirole, Jean, 1994. "Formal and Real Authority in Organizations," IDEI Working Papers 37, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
- Philippe Aghion & Jean Tirole, 1994. "Normal and Real Authority in Organizations," Working papers 94-13, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
- Philippe Aghion & Jean Tirole, 1994. "Formal and Real Authority in Organizations," Working papers 95-8, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
- Laffont, J. J. & Tirole, J., 1988.
"Repeated Auctions of Incentive Contracts, Investment and Bidding Parity with an Application to Takeovers,"
675, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
- Jean-Jacques Laffont & Jean Tirole, 1988. "Repeated Auctions of Incentive Contracts, Investment, and Bidding Parity with an Application to Takeovers," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 19(4), pages 516-537, Winter.
- Jean Tirole & Jean-Jaques Laffont, 1987. "Repeated Auctions of Incentive Contracts, Investment and Bidding Parity With an Application to Takeovers," Working papers 463, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
- Carrillo, Juan D & Mariotti, Thomas, 2000. "Strategic Ignorance as a Self-Disciplining Device," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(3), pages 529-44, July.
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