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Mine and yours: Property rights in dictator games

Robert Oxoby () and John Spraggon ()

Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 2008, vol. 65, issue 3-4, 703-713

Abstract: We conduct experiments on earned wealth effects in dictator games. In addition to a standard treatment in which wealth was determined by the experimenter, we conduct treatments in which the dictator or the receiver earned the wealth used in the dictator game. In our baseline treatment, on average, dictators allocate receivers 20 percent. In treatments where dictators earned wealth, we observe the (theoretically predicted) zero offers to receivers. In treatments where receivers earned wealth, we observe distributions of offers in which receivers' shares exceeds 50 percent. These results emphasize the importance of property rights in determining individuals' social preferences.

Date: 2008
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Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization is currently edited by Houser, D. and Puzzello, D.

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