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Social preferences in the public arena: evidence from a prisoner's dilemma game on a TV show

Belot, M.; Bhaskar, V.; van de Ven, J.; (2006) Social preferences in the public arena: evidence from a prisoner's dilemma game on a TV show. (ELSE Working Papers 221). ESRC Centre for Economic Learning and Social Evolution: London, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

We analyze a large stakes prisoner's dilemma game played on a TV show. Players cooperate 40% of the time, demonstrating that social preferences are important; however, cooperation is significantly below the 50% threshold that is required for inequity aversion to sustain cooperation. Women cooperate significantly more than men, while players who have "earned" more of the stake cooperate less. A player's promise to cooperate is also a good predictor of his decision. Surprisingly, a player's probability of cooperation is unrelated to the opponent's characteristics or promise. We argue that inequity aversion alone cannot adequately explain these results; reputational concerns in a public setting might be more important.

Type: Working / discussion paper
Title: Social preferences in the public arena: evidence from a prisoner's dilemma game on a TV show
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: http://else.econ.ucl.ac.uk/newweb/papers.php#2006
Language: English
Keywords: C72, C93, D64
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of SandHS > Dept of Economics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/14512
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