Temptation and Commitment in the Laboratory
Daniel Houser (),
Daniel Schunk (),
Joachim Winter () and
Erte Xiao ()
No 1720, Working Papers from Gutenberg School of Management and Economics, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
We report data from a novel laboratory experiment on economic decisions under persistent temptations. This type of temptation is ubiquitous, as it refers to any temptation that is present until one either gives in or makes a costly commitment decision to have it removed. Subjects in our experiment are repeatedly offered an option with instantaneous benefit that also entails a substantial reduction to overall earnings. We show that this option is tempting in the sense that a substantial fraction of our subjects incur pecuniary costs to eliminate the choice, and thus commit not to choose this alternative. We find that commitment and giving in to temptation generally occur at the first opportunity, though a non-negligible fraction of subjects delay either making the commitment decision or giving in to temptation. This delay is consistent with the costs of self-control increasing with its use.
Keywords: self-control; willpower; temptation; commitment; laboratory experiment (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D11 C91 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe, nep-exp and nep-neu
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations View citations in EconPapers (6) Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
http://www.macro.economics.uni-mainz.de/RePEc/pdf/Discussion_Paper_1720.pdf First version, 2017 (application/pdf)
Journal Article: Temptation and commitment in the laboratory (2018)
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:jgu:wpaper:1720
Access Statistics for this paper
More papers in Working Papers from Gutenberg School of Management and Economics, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Research Unit IPP ().