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An Experimental Investigation of Social Norms

Mari Rege () and Kjetil Telle

Discussion Papers from Statistics Norway, Research Department

Abstract: Several economists have maintained that social and internalized norms can enforce cooperation in public good situations. This experimental study investigates impacts of social and internalized norms for cooperation among strangers in a public good game. The experiment has two treatment effects. First, it reveals each person's identity and his contribution to the public good. Second, it presents the public good game in a language which suggests associations to social and internalized norms for cooperation. Both treatment effects increase voluntary contributions significantly. These results suggest two important policy tools to crowd in social and internalized norms in a public good situation.

Keywords: Cooperation; Framing; Public goods; Social approval; Social norms. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: A13 C91 D11 H41 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2001-10
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