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Preferences for truth-telling

Johannes Abeler, Daniele Nosenzo and Collin Raymond ()
Additional contact information
Collin Raymond: Amherst College

No 2016-13, Discussion Papers from The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham

Abstract: Private information is at the heart of many economic activities. For decades, economists have assumed that individuals are willing to misreport private information if this maximizes their material payoff. We combine data from 72 experimental studies in economics, psychology and sociology, and show that, in fact, people lie surprisingly little. We then formalize a wide range of potential explanations for the observed behavior, identify testable predictions that can distinguish between the models and conduct new experiments to do so. None of the most popular explanations suggested in the literature can explain the data. We show that only combining a preference for being honest with a preference for being seen as honest can organize the empirical evidence.

Keywords: private information; honesty; truth-telling; lying; meta study (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe, nep-exp, nep-gth, nep-hpe and nep-sog
Date: 2016
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Working Paper: Preferences for Truth-Telling (2016) Downloads
Working Paper: Preferences for Truth-Telling (2016) Downloads
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:not:notcdx:2016-13

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