Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2331487
 


 



When 3 + 1 > 4: Gift Structure and Reciprocity in the Field


Duncan S. Gilchrist


Harvard University - Department of Economics; Harvard Business School

Michael Luca


Harvard Business School - Negotiations, Organizations & Markets Unit

Deepak K. Malhotra


Harvard Business School - Negotiation, Organizations & Markets Unit

April 7, 2015

Harvard Business School NOM Unit Working Paper No. 14-030

Abstract:     
Do higher wages elicit reciprocity and lead to increased productivity? In a field experiment with 266 employees, we find that paying higher wages, per se, does not have a discernible effect on productivity (in a context with no future employment opportunities). However, structuring a portion of the wage as a clear and unexpected gift – by offering a raise (with no additional conditions) after the employee has accepted the contract – does lead to higher productivity for the duration of the job. Gifts are roughly as efficient as hiring more workers.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 28


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Date posted: September 27, 2013 ; Last revised: April 9, 2015

Suggested Citation

Gilchrist, Duncan S. and Luca, Michael and Malhotra, Deepak K., When 3 + 1 > 4: Gift Structure and Reciprocity in the Field (April 7, 2015). Harvard Business School NOM Unit Working Paper No. 14-030. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2331487 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2331487

Contact Information

Duncan S. Gilchrist
Harvard University - Department of Economics ( email )
Littauer Center
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
Harvard Business School ( email )
Soldiers Field Road
Boston, MA 02163
United States
Michael Luca (Contact Author)
Harvard Business School - Negotiations, Organizations & Markets Unit ( email )
Soldiers Field Road
Boston, MA 02163
United States
HOME PAGE: http://drfd.hbs.edu/fit/public/facultyInfo.do?facInfo=ovr&facId=602417
Deepak K. Malhotra
Harvard Business School - Negotiation, Organizations & Markets Unit ( email )
Soldiers Field Road
Morgan 270C
Boston, MA 02163
United States
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