Discussion Papers, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes 2000,28
In this note we present an experiment to compare the two competing fairness theories by Bolton / Ockenfels and Fehr / Schmidt. For most experiments that these theories have previously been applied to, they make similar predictions so that it is difficult to compare their predictive accuracy. We designed a very simple experiment that induces opposing predictions made by both theories. We find that if the maximization of total payoff is in line with the decision predicted by Fehr and Schmidt, almost all subjects decide accordingly, whereas if it is in line with the prediction by Bolton and Ockenfels, decisions are dispersed.