Let Me See You! A Video Experiment on the Social Dimension of Risk Preferences

19 Pages Posted: 4 Oct 2007

See all articles by Werner Guth

Werner Guth

Max Planck Institute of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

M. Vittoria Levati

Max Planck Society for the Advancement of the Sciences - Strategic Interaction Group

Matteo Ploner

University of Trento

Date Written: April 2007

Abstract

Previous studies have shown that decision makers are less other-regarding when their own payoff is risky than when it is sure. Empirical observations also indicate that people care more about identifiable than unidentifiable others. In this paper, we report on an experiment designed to explore whether rendering the other identifiable − via a short speechless video − can affect the relation between other-regarding concerns and attitudes toward social risk. For this sake, we elicit risk attitudes under two treatments differing in whether the actor can see the other or not. We find that seeing the other does not affect behavior significantly: regardless of the treatment, individuals are mainly self-oriented as to social allocation of risk, though they are other-regarding with respect to expected payoff levels.

Keywords: Risk attitudes, other-regarding concerns, identifiability

JEL Classification: C90, D63, D81

Suggested Citation

Güth, Werner and Levati, M. Vittoria and Ploner, Matteo, Let Me See You! A Video Experiment on the Social Dimension of Risk Preferences (April 2007). Jena Economic Research Paper No. 2007-005. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1018591 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1018591

Werner Güth (Contact Author)

Max Planck Institute of Economics ( email )

Kahlaische Strasse 10
D-07745 Jena, 07745
Germany

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

M. Vittoria Levati

Max Planck Society for the Advancement of the Sciences - Strategic Interaction Group ( email )

D-07745 Jena
Germany

Matteo Ploner

University of Trento ( email )

Via Giuseppe Verdi 26
Trento, Trento 38152
Italy

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