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Theory of Mind predicts cooperative behavior

Gregory DeAngelo and Bryan McCannon

Economics Letters, 2017, vol. 155, issue C, 1-4

Abstract: Explanations for cooperation in Prisoner’s Dilemma games have generated significant interest. While institutional explanations have offered considerable explanatory ability, a psychological measure of Theory of the Mind that measures an individual’s ability to process social and emotional cognition offers new insights. Using this measure, we examine how it explains (un)cooperative behavior. We find that subjects who have higher ToM are less cooperative and extract higher payoffs.

Keywords: Cooperation; Experiment; Prisoner’s Dilemma; Reading Mind in the Eyes; Theory of the Mind (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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Working Paper: Theory of Mind Predicts Cooperative Behavior (2016) Downloads
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DOI: 10.1016/j.econlet.2017.02.009

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