Other-Regarding Preferences, Group Identity and Political Participation: An Experiment

Tinbergen Institute Discussion Paper 13-079/I

43 Pages Posted: 12 Jun 2013

See all articles by Pedro Brito Robalo

Pedro Brito Robalo

Max Planck Institute, Bonn

Arthur J. H. C. Schram

University of Amsterdam - Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB); Tinbergen Institute

Joep Sonnemans

University of Amsterdam - Amsterdam School of Economics (ASE)

Date Written: June 10, 2013

Abstract

We experimentally study the relationship between other-regarding preferences, group identity and political participation. In doing so, we propose a novel group identity induction procedure that succeeds in creating environments where in-group bias is either high or low. At the individual level, we find that both altruistic subjects and group identifiers participate above average. The most competitive subjects participate much less often than other types, while the most altruistic subjects manage to sustain high participation levels. At the aggregate level, we observe only few statistically significant differences between environments where group identity is high and low. This suggests that the higher participation observed in field settings for close-knit (political) groups might be due to underlying mobilization processes rather than a heightened sense of group-belonging.

Keywords: Group identity, Other-regarding preferences, Political participation, Participation Game, Experiment

JEL Classification: A13, C91, C92, D72

Suggested Citation

Robalo, Pedro Brito and Schram, Arthur J. H. C. and Sonnemans, Joep, Other-Regarding Preferences, Group Identity and Political Participation: An Experiment (June 10, 2013). Tinbergen Institute Discussion Paper 13-079/I, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2277444 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2277444

Pedro Brito Robalo (Contact Author)

Max Planck Institute, Bonn ( email )

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

HOME PAGE: http://www.coll.mpg.de/team/page/pedro_robalo

Arthur J. H. C. Schram

University of Amsterdam - Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB) ( email )

Roetersstraat 18
CREED
Amsterdam 1018 WB
Netherlands
+31 (0)20 525 4293 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.fee.uva.nl/creed/PEOPLE/Arthurs.htm

Tinbergen Institute ( email )

Burg. Oudlaan 50
Rotterdam, 3062 PA
Netherlands

Joep Sonnemans

University of Amsterdam - Amsterdam School of Economics (ASE) ( email )

Roetersstraat 11
1018 WB Amsterdam
Netherlands
+31 20 525 4249 (Phone)
+31 20 525 5283 (Fax)

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