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Does Workplace Competition Increase Labor Supply? Evidence from a Field Experiment

Amalia Miller, Ragan Petrie and Carmit Segal

Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series from Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne

Abstract: This paper develops a novel field experiment to test the implicit prediction of tournament theory that competition increases work time and can therefore contribute to the long work hours required in elite occupations. A majority of workers in the treatment without explicit financial incentives worked past the minimum time, but awarding a tournament prize increased work time and effort by over 80% and lowered costs of effort or output by over a third. Effort was similar with alternative (piece rate, low-prize tournament) bonuses. Men worked longer than women in the high-prize tournament, but for the same duration in other treatments.

Keywords: tournaments; performance pay; long work hours; elite occupations; gender (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D91 J16 J22 J33 J44 M52 M55 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 59pp
Date: 2019-11
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-exp, nep-hrm, nep-lma and nep-ore
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (1)

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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:iae:iaewps:wp2019n14

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