I conduct an experimental study to observe variations in dishonesty, and establish that people’s decision to be dishonest does not only depend on an economic cost-benefit analysis. A first round dictator game, where a Sender divides a given pie between himself and an anonymous Receiver, establishes the fair (or unfair) treatment of the Receiver. Both the Sender and the Receiver then proceed to play a trivia game where their actual performance is recorded, as well as their self-reported performance; the difference becoming a measure of dishonesty. I find that if a Receiver is treated unfairly, his performance is weaker in a trivia game . However, there is no relation between altruism and trivia ability. I also establish unfair treatment to trigger dishonesty for Receivers. Therefore we argue that dishonesty becomes a deliberate action that participants can manipulate as a tool to react to past unfair events.
|Keywords:||Behavioral, Experimental, Economics, Psychology, Ethics, Dictator Game|
Visiting Assistant Professor of Economics, Middlebury College, MIddlebury, VT, USA
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