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Understanding Social Preferences with Simple Tests

Gary Charness () and Matthew Rabin

General Economics and Teaching from University Library of Munich, Germany

Abstract: Departures from self-interest in economic experiments have recently inspired models of "social preferences". We design a range of simple experimental games that test these theories more directly than existing experiments. Our experiments show that subjects are more concerned with increasing social welfare sacrificing to increase the payoffs for all recipients, especially low-payoff recipients than with reducing differences in payoffs (as supposed in recent models). Subjects are also motivated by reciprocity: They withdraw willingness to sacrifice to achieve a fair outcome when others are themselves unwilling to sacrifice, and sometimes punish unfair behavior.

JEL-codes: A12 A13 B49 C70 C91 D63 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe
Date: 2003-03-19
Note: 57 pages, Acrobat .pdf
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (21) Track citations by RSS feed

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Related works:
Journal Article: Understanding Social Preferences with Simple Tests (2002) Downloads
Working Paper: Understanding Social Preferences with Simple Tests (2002) Downloads
Working Paper: Understanding Social Preferences with Simple Tests (2001) Downloads
Working Paper: UNDERSTANDING SOCIAL PREFERENCES WITH SIMPLE TESTS (2001) Downloads
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:wpa:wuwpgt:0303002

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