Free Riding and Workplace Democracy – Heterogeneous Task Preferences and Sorting

60 Pages Posted: 2 Feb 2020

See all articles by Kenju Kamei

Kenju Kamei

Durham University - Department of Economics and Finance

Thomas Markussen

University of Copenhagen - Department of Economics

Date Written: September 2019

Abstract

A novel laboratory experiment is used to show that mismatching between task preferences and task assignment undermines worker productivity and leads to free riding in teams. We elicit task preferences from all workers. Workers’ endogenous sorting into tasks significantly improves productivity under individual-based remuneration (performance pay). Under team-based remuneration (revenue sharing), free riding is significant, but almost exclusively among those working on undesired tasks. Task selection by majority voting in teams alleviates free riding, but only partly so, because some workers are still assigned to undesired tasks. Our findings have broad implications for research using real effort tasks.

Keywords: free riding, team, workplace democracy, experiment, real effort

JEL Classification: C92, C91, H41, D82, J01

Suggested Citation

Kamei, Kenju and Markussen, Thomas, Free Riding and Workplace Democracy – Heterogeneous Task Preferences and Sorting (September 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3516513 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3516513

Kenju Kamei

Durham University - Department of Economics and Finance ( email )

Durham, DH1 3HY
United Kingdom

Thomas Markussen (Contact Author)

University of Copenhagen - Department of Economics ( email )

Øster Farimagsgade 5
Bygning 26
1353 Copenhagen K.
Denmark

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
28
Abstract Views
266
PlumX Metrics