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The Persistent Power of Promises

Florian Ederer and Frédéric Schneider

No 2129R, Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers from Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University

Abstract: Using a large-scale hybrid laboratory and online trust experiment with pre-play communication this paper investigates how the passage of time affects trust, trustworthiness, and cooperation. We provide evidence for the persistent power of communication. Even when three weeks pass between messages and actual choices and even when these choices are made outside of the lab, communication (predominantly through the use of promises) raises cooperation, trust, and trustworthiness by about 50 percent. Delays between the beginning of the interaction and the time to reciprocate neither substantially alter trust or trustworthiness nor affect how subjects choose to communicate.

Keywords: Trust; Promises; Persistence; Trustworthiness; Delay (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C72 C91 D83 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 25 pages
Date: 2018-04, Revised 2019-05
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe, nep-evo, nep-exp and nep-ore
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations:

Published in American Economic Journal: Microeconomics 2022 14(3): 304-320

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