Preferences for Efficiency, Rather Than Preferences for Morality, Drive Cooperation in the One-Shot Stag-Hunt Game

7 Pages Posted: 12 Aug 2019

See all articles by Valerio Capraro

Valerio Capraro

Middlesex University

Ismael Rodriguez-Lara

University of Granada - Campus La Cartuja

Maria Jose Ruiz-Martos

University of Granada

Date Written: August 8, 2019

Abstract

Recent work highlights that cooperation in the one-shot Prisoner’s dilemma (PD) is primarily driven by moral preferences for doing the right thing, rather than social preferences for equity or efficiency. By contrast, little is known on what motivates cooperation in the Stag-Hunt Game (SHG). Cooperation in the SHG fundamentally differs from cooperation in the PD in that it is not costly, but risky: players have no temptation to deviate from the cooperative outcome, but cooperation only pays off if the other player cooperates. Here, we provide data from a large (N=436), pre-registered, experiment. Contrary to what has been observed for the PD, we find that SHG cooperation is primarily driven by preferences for efficiency, rather than preferences for doing the right thing.

Keywords: morality, cooperation, efficiency, risky choices, stag-hunt game.

JEL Classification: C70, C71, C72, D01, D03, D63, D64

Suggested Citation

Capraro, Valerio and Rodriguez-Lara, Ismael and Ruiz-Martos, Maria Jose, Preferences for Efficiency, Rather Than Preferences for Morality, Drive Cooperation in the One-Shot Stag-Hunt Game (August 8, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3434445 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3434445

Valerio Capraro (Contact Author)

Middlesex University ( email )

The Burroughs
London, NW4 4BT
United Kingdom

Ismael Rodriguez-Lara

University of Granada - Campus La Cartuja ( email )

Campus La Cartuja
Granada
Spain

Maria Jose Ruiz-Martos

University of Granada ( email )

Granada, Granada 18071
Spain

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