Trustworthy by Convention

Quaderni DSE Working Paper No. 827

31 Pages Posted: 14 May 2012

See all articles by Maria Bigoni

Maria Bigoni

University of Bologna - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Stefania Bortolotti

MPI for Research on Collective Goods

Marco Casari

University of Bologna - Department of Economics

Diego Gambetta

University of Oxford

Date Written: May 14, 2012

Abstract

Social life offers innumerable instances in which trust relations involve multiple agents. In an experiment, we study a new setting called Collective Trust Game where there are multiple trustees, who may have an incentive to coordinate their actions. Trustworthiness has also a strategic motivation, and the trusters' decision depends upon their beliefs about the predominant convention with regard to trustworthiness. In this respect, the Collective Trust Games offers a richer pattern of behavior than dyadic games. We report that the levels of trustworthiness are almost thirty percentage points higher when strategic motivations are present rather than not. Higher levels of trustworthiness also led to higher levels of trust. Moreover, strategic motives appear as a major drive for trustees, comparable in size to positive reciprocity, and more important than concerns for equality.

Keywords: trust game, coordination, inequality aversion, reciprocity, experiments

JEL Classification: C92, C72, D03

Suggested Citation

Bigoni, Maria and Bortolotti, Stefania and Casari, Marco and Gambetta, Diego, Trustworthy by Convention (May 14, 2012). Quaderni DSE Working Paper No. 827. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2057607 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2057607

Maria Bigoni (Contact Author)

University of Bologna - Department of Economics ( email )

Piazza Scaravilli 2
Bologna, Bologna 40126
Italy
+390512098134 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.unibo.it/sitoweb/maria.bigoni/en

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

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

Stefania Bortolotti

MPI for Research on Collective Goods ( email )

Kurt-Schumacher-Str. 10
D-53113 Bonn, 53113
Germany

Marco Casari

University of Bologna - Department of Economics ( email )

Strada Maggiore 45
Bologna, 40125
Italy

Diego Gambetta

University of Oxford ( email )

Mansfield Road
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX1 4AU
United Kingdom

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
55
rank
365,312
Abstract Views
771
PlumX Metrics
!

Under construction: SSRN citations while be offline until July when we will launch a brand new and improved citations service, check here for more details.

For more information