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Distributional preferences explain individual behavior across games and time

Morten Hedegaard, Rudolf Kerschbamer (), Daniel Müller and Jean-Robert Tyran ()

Games and Economic Behavior, 2021, vol. 128, issue C, 231-255

Abstract: We use a large and heterogeneous sample of the Danish population to investigate the importance of distributional preferences for behavior in a trust game and a public good game. We find robust evidence for the significant explanatory power of distributional preferences. In fact, compared to twenty-one covariates, distributional preferences turn out to be the single most important predictor of behavior. Specifically, subjects who reveal benevolence in the domain of advantageous inequality are more likely to pick the trustworthy action in the trust game and contribute more to the public good than other subjects. Since the experiments were spread out more than one year, our results suggest that there is a component of distributional preferences that is stable across games and over time.

Keywords: Distributional preferences; Social preferences; Equality-Equivalence Test; Representative online experiment; Trust game; Public goods game; Dictator game (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C72 C91 D64 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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Working Paper: Distributional Preferences Explain Individual Behavior Across Games and Time (2019) Downloads
Working Paper: Distributional Preferences Explain Individual Behavior Across Games and Time (2019) Downloads
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DOI: 10.1016/j.geb.2021.05.003

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