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Public goods games and psychological utility: Theory and evidence

Sanjit Dhami (), Mengxing Wei and Ali al-Nowaihi

Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 2019, vol. 167, issue C, 361-390

Abstract: We consider a theoretical model of a public goods game that incorporates reciprocity, guilt-aversion/surprise-seeking, and the attribution of intentions behind these emotions. In order to test our predictions, we implement the ‘induced beliefs method’ and a within-subjects design, using the strategy method. We find that all our psychological variables contribute towards the explanation of contributions. Guilt-aversion is pervasive at the individual-level and the aggregate-level and it is relatively more important than surprise-seeking. Our between-subjects analysis confirms the results of the within-subjects design.

Keywords: D01; D03; H41; Public goods games; Psychological game theory; Reciprocity; Surprise-seeking/guilt-aversion; Attribution of intentions; Induced beliefs method; Within and between subjects designs (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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Working Paper: Public Goods Games and Psychological Utility: Theory and Evidence (2018) Downloads
Working Paper: Public goods games and psychological utility: Theory and evidence (2016) Downloads
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DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2017.11.002

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