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Public Discourse and Socially Responsible Market Behavior

Björn Bartling, Vanessa Valero, Roberto A. Weber and Yao Lan

No 8531, CESifo Working Paper Series from CESifo

Abstract: We investigate the causal impact of public discourse on socially responsible market behavior. We conduct laboratory market experiments with products that differ in their production costs and social impact, and provide market actors and impacted third parties with the opportunity to discuss appropriate market behavior. Across two studies that vary characteristics of the discourse, the external impact and the participants, we find that public discourse substantially increases market social responsibility. Our findings suggest that discussions and campaigns focusing on appropriate market behavior can be powerful tools for shaping responsible norms governing market conduct and addressing inefficiencies due to market failures.

Keywords: public discourse; market failure; externalities; social responsibility; social norms; experiment; communication (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C92 D62 D83 M14 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-exp and nep-soc
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