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Fairness and cheating

Daniel Houser (), Stefan Vetter and Joachim Winter ()

Munich Reprints in Economics from University of Munich, Department of Economics

Abstract: We present evidence from a laboratory experiment showing that individuals who believe they were treated unfairly in an interaction with another person are more likely to cheat in a subsequent unrelated game. Specifically, subjects first participated in a dictator game. They then flipped a coin in private and reported the outcome. Subjects could increase their total payoff by cheating, i.e., lying about the outcome of the coin toss. We found that subjects were more likely to cheat in reporting the outcome of the coin flip when: (1) they received either nothing or a very small transfer from the dictator; and (2) they claimed to have been treated unfairly.

Date: 2012
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Published in European Economic Review 8 56(2012): pp. 1645-1655

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Journal Article: Fairness and cheating (2012) Downloads
Working Paper: Fairness and Cheating (2011) Downloads
Working Paper: Fairness and Cheating (2010) Downloads
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