Other regarding preferences and reciprocity:insights from experimental findings and satisfaction data

Becchetti LeonardoPelligra VittorioTaurino Serena F.
CEIS Research Paper
We measure satisfaction about experimental outcomes, personal and other participants' behaviour after a multiperiod "hybrid contribution" multiplayer prisoner's dilemma called the "vote with the wallet" game. Our work shows that participants who cooperated above median (which we define as strong cooperators) are significantly more satisfied with the game in proportion to their cooperative choice. On the contrary, their satisfaction for the other players' behavior is negatively correlated with the extent of their own cooperative behavior and the non-cooperative behavior of the latter. The satisfaction of strong cooperators for their behavior in the game depends in turn on the share of their own cooperative choices. We document that a broader utility function including heterogeneity in expectations on other players' behavior, other-regarding preferences, and a negative reciprocity argument may account for the combination of the observed experimental and satisfaction findings.

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Number: 363
Volume: 14
Issue: 1
Date: Monday, February 1, 2016
Revision Date: Monday, February 1, 2016