EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

Peers and productivity: Evidence from an experimental factory

Diane Reyniers

MPRA Paper from University Library of Munich, Germany

Abstract: Workplace peer effects are well documented, but why they arise remains a puzzle. This paper investigates the issue experimentally. Subjects are brought together to perform a real-effort task in a simulated factory environment. Varying the returns to effort by altering free-riding incentives or piece rates does not affect productivity but psychological factors do matter. Even though there are no technological complementarities, co-workers’ productivity levels are highly correlated. Three psychological mechanisms which can generate these correlations are examined: (a) workers’ desire to conform to a work norm, (b) inequity aversion and (c) concern about relative performance. Subjects’ enjoyment of the task depends on their relative performance and not on how close their productivity is to the norm or on the inequity of outcomes. This finding suggests that peer effects arise because of intrinsic competitiveness. Subjects hate to do worse than their co-workers and love to do better.

Keywords: Peer Effects; Job satisfaction; Relative Performance Concerns; Social Norms (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C9 C91 C92 D23 J24 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-exp, nep-hrm, nep-lma and nep-ure
Date: 2018-11
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link)
https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/91215/1/MPRA_paper_91215.pdf original version (application/pdf)

Related works:
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:pra:mprapa:91215

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in MPRA Paper from University Library of Munich, Germany Ludwigstraße 33, D-80539 Munich, Germany. Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Joachim Winter ().

 
Page updated 2019-05-10
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:91215