Do Women Behave More Reciprocally than Men? Gender Differences in Real Effort Dictator Games

11 Pages Posted: 28 Oct 2010 Last revised: 17 Apr 2014

See all articles by Matthias Heinz

Matthias Heinz

University of Cologne - Department of Personnel Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Steffen Juranek

Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Business and Management Science

Holger Andreas Rau

University of Goettingen (Gottingen)

Date Written: June 1, 2012

Abstract

We analyze dictator allocation decisions in an experiment where the recipients have to earn the pot to be divided with a real-effort task. As the recipients move before the dictators, their effort decisions resemble the first move in a trust game. Depending on the recipients’ performance, the size of the pot is either high or low. We compare this real-effort treatment to a baseline treatment where the pot is a windfall gain and where a lottery determines the pot size. In the baseline treatment, reciprocity cannot play a role. We find that female dictators show reciprocity and decrease their taking-rates significantly in the real-effort treatment. This treatment effect is larger when female dictators make a decision on recipients who successfully generated a large pot compared to the case where the recipients performed poorly. By contrast, there is no treatment effect with male dictators, who generally exhibit more selfish behavior.

Keywords: Gender, Dictator Game, Real Effort, Reciprocity

JEL Classification: C72, C91

Suggested Citation

Heinz, Matthias and Juranek, Steffen and Rau, Holger Andreas, Do Women Behave More Reciprocally than Men? Gender Differences in Real Effort Dictator Games (June 1, 2012). Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 2012, Vol. 83 (1), p. 105-110 . Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1698188 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1698188

Matthias Heinz

University of Cologne - Department of Personnel Economics ( email )

Cologne, 50923
Germany

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) ( email )

London
United Kingdom

Steffen Juranek

Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Business and Management Science ( email )

Helleveien 30
Bergen, NO-5045
Norway

Holger Andreas Rau (Contact Author)

University of Goettingen (Gottingen) ( email )

Platz der Gottinger Sieben 3
Gottingen, D-37073
Germany

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