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Inequity aversion and team incentives

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  • Pedro Rey Biel

    (University College London)

Abstract

We study optimal contracts when employees are averse to inequity as modelled by Fehr and Schmidt (1999). A ''selfish'' employer can profitably exploit preferences for equity among his employees by offering contracts which create maximum inequity off-equilibrium and thus, leave employees feeling envy or guilt when they do not produce the optimal output level. We show how the optimal contract is designed such that the subgame played by the employees is dominance solvable, and thus, a unique optimal level of production is implemented. We also discuss conditions for inequity aversion to affect the optimal output choice. Similar results are obtained for other types of distributional preferences such status-seeking or efficiency concerns.

Suggested Citation

  • Pedro Rey Biel, 2004. "Inequity aversion and team incentives," Microeconomics 0407009, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpmi:0407009
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    035 Principal; agent; inequity aversion; team incentives; behavioral contract theory;

    JEL classification:

    • D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement

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