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Title:Do i really want to know? A cognitive dissonance-based explanation of other-regarding behavior PDF Logo
Authors:Matthey, Astrid
Regner, Tobias
Issue Date:2010
Series/Report no.:Jena economic research papers 2010,077
Abstract:We investigate to what extent genuine social preferences can explain observed other-regarding behavior. In a dictator game variant subjects can choose whether to learn about the consequences of their choice for the receiver. We find that a majority of subjects showing other-regarding behavior when the payoffs of the receiver are known, choose to ignore these consequences if possible. This behavior is inconsistent with preferences about outcomes. Other-regarding behavior may also be explained by avoiding cognitive dissonance as in Konow (2000). Our experiment's choice data is in line with this approach. In addition, we successfully relate individual behavior to proxies for cognitive dissonance.
Subjects:social preferences
other-regarding behavior
experiments
social dilemma
cognitive dissonance
JEL:C72
D01
C91
D80
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:Jena Economic Research Papers, MPI für Ökonomik

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