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Moral hypocrisy, power and social preferences

Aldo Rustichini and Marie Claire Villeval ()

Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 2014, vol. 107, issue PA, 10-24

Abstract: We study how individuals adjust their judgment of fairness and unfairness when they are in the position of spectators before and after making real decisions, and how this adjustment depends on the actions they take in the game. We find that norms that appear universal instead take into account the players’ bargaining power. Also, individuals adjust their judgments after playing the game for real money, when they behaved more selfishly and only in games where choices have no strategic consequence. We interpret this possibly self-deceptive adjustment of judgments to actions as moral hypocrisy. This behavior appears produced by the attempt to strike a compromise between self-image and payoffs, so as to release oneself of one's responsibility for selfish behavior.

Keywords: Moral hypocrisy; Fairness; Social preferences; Power; Self-deception; Experiment (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D03 D63 C91 C7 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2014
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Related works:
Working Paper: Moral hypocrisy, power and social preferences (2014)
Working Paper: Moral Hypocrisy, Power and Social Preferences (2012) Downloads
Working Paper: Moral Hypocrisy, Power and Social Preferences (2012)
Working Paper: Moral Hypocrisy, Power and Social Preferences (2012)
Working Paper: Moral Hypocrisy, Power and Social Preferences (2012) Downloads
Working Paper: Moral Hypocrisy, Power and Social Preferences (2012) Downloads
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