The Multi-Dimensional Effects of Reciprocity on Worker Effort: Evidence from a Hybrid Field-Laboratory Labor Market Experiment

37 Pages Posted: 25 Mar 2012

See all articles by Min-Taec Kim

Min-Taec Kim

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Robert Slonim

The University of Sydney; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

We examine the gift exchange hypothesis on both the quantity and quality of output using a hybrid field-laboratory labor market experiment. We recruited participants to enter survey data for a well-known charitable organization. Workers were paid either a high or low wage. We find that although the total number of surveys entered did not vary with the wage, high wage workers made fewer errors and entered more surveys after controlling for errors. We further find that for low costs associated with errors, offering the low wage maximizes profits, but for higher costs paying the higher "gift exchange" wage maximizes profits.

Keywords: laboratory and field experiments, multi-tasking, reciprocity, gift exchange

JEL Classification: C91, C93, J33, J41, D03

Suggested Citation

Kim, Min-Taec and Slonim, Robert, The Multi-Dimensional Effects of Reciprocity on Worker Effort: Evidence from a Hybrid Field-Laboratory Labor Market Experiment. IZA Discussion Paper No. 6410. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2028210

Min-Taec Kim (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Robert Slonim

The University of Sydney ( email )

University of Sydney
Sydney, NC NSW 2006
Australia

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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