How the honesty oath works: Quick, intuitive truth telling under oath
Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), 2021, vol. 94, issue C
This study analyzes the workings of oath-taking when the decision about lying requires strategic thinking. In a laboratory experiment, the oath leads to more truth telling, but it does not make liars reduce the sizes of their lies. While truth tellers decide faster due to the oath, liars need more time to decide under oath. By analyzing players’ beliefs about their co-players’ mistrust, I find that the oath reduces the extent of strategic reasoning in the decision whether to tell the truth or not. These findings are consistent with the conjecture that the honesty oath works by making the decision to tell the truth less deliberate and more intuitive.
Keywords: Honesty oath; Strategic deception; Truth telling; Size of the lie; Laboratory experiment (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C91 D03 D63 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:soceco:v:94:y:2021:i:c:s2214804321000689
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