A Gift is Not Always a Gift: Heterogeneity and Long‐Term Effects in a Gift Exchange Experiment

27 Pages Posted: 14 Mar 2013

See all articles by Sascha O. Becker

Sascha O. Becker

University of Warwick; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Ifo Institute for Economic Research

Dolores Messer

University of Bern

Stefan C. Wolter

Swiss Coordination Centre for Research in Education (SKBF); University of Bern - Department of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Date Written: April 2013

Abstract

We study gift exchange in a field experiment where a random subsample of participants in the Swiss Labour Force Survey received vouchers to be used in adult training. Actual voucher redemption can be traced, giving us the unique opportunity to study whether gift exchange in the form of participation in future rounds of the survey depends on the perceived usefulness of the gift. The group of voucher recipients as a whole has significantly higher response rates. There is considerable heterogeneity, however. Our results point to a long‐lasting gift exchange relationship only for the subgroup that redeemed their vouchers.

Keywords: gift exchange, reciprocity, field experiment, long‐run effects

Suggested Citation

Becker, Sascha O. and Messer, Dolores and Wolter, Stefan C., A Gift is Not Always a Gift: Heterogeneity and Long‐Term Effects in a Gift Exchange Experiment (April 2013). Economica, Vol. 80, Issue 318, pp. 345-371, 2013. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2233210 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ecca.12004

Sascha O. Becker (Contact Author)

University of Warwick ( email )

Gibbet Hill Rd.
Coventry, West Midlands CV4 8UW
United Kingdom

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://sobecker.de

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Ifo Institute for Economic Research

Munich
Germany

Dolores Messer

University of Bern ( email )

Gesellschaftsstrasse 49
CH-3012 Bern, BERN 3001
Switzerland

Stefan C. Wolter

Swiss Coordination Centre for Research in Education (SKBF) ( email )

CH - 5000 Aarau
Switzerland
+41 62 835 23 90 (Phone)
+41 62 835 23 99 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.skbf-csre.ch

University of Bern - Department of Economics ( email )

Gesellschaftstrasse 49
Bern, CH-3012
Switzerland
+41 31 631 40 95 (Phone)
+41 31 631 39 92 (Fax)

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
1
Abstract Views
209
PlumX Metrics
!

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

For more information