Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/94008
Authors: 
Houser, Daniel
Vetter, Stefan
Winter, Joachim
Year of Publication: 
2010
Series/Report no.: 
SFB/TR 15 Discussion Paper 335
Abstract: 
We present evidence from a laboratory experiment showing that individuals who believe they were treated unfairly in an interaction with another person are more likely to cheat in a subsequent unrelated game. Specifically, subjects first participated in a dictator game. They then flipped a coin in private and reported the outcome. Subjects could increase their total payoff by cheating, i.e., lying about the outcome of the coin toss. We found that subjects were more likely to cheat in reporting the outcome of the coin flip when: 1) they received either nothing or a very small transfer from the dictator; and 2) they claimed to have been treated unfairly. This is consistent with the view that experiencing a norm violation is sufficient to justify the violation of another norm at the expense of a third party. This result extends the growing literature on social norms.
Subjects: 
cheating
social norms
experimental design
JEL: 
C91
D03
D63
Persistent Identifier of the first edition: 
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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