Volunteering at the Workplace under Incomplete Information: Teamsize Does Not Matter

62 Pages Posted: 16 Feb 2020

See all articles by Adrian Hillenbrand

Adrian Hillenbrand

Max Planck Society for the Advancement of the Sciences - Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods

Tobias Werner

University of Duesseldorf

Fabian Winter

Max-Planck-Institute for Research on Collective Goods

Date Written: February 10, 2020

Abstract

Volunteering is a widespread allocation mechanism at the workplace and emerges naturally in open-source software development, the generation of online knowledge platforms, and to some extent in “agile” work environments. Using a field experiment with 8 treatments and close to 2,800 workers on an online labor market, we study the effect of team size on volunteering at the workplace under incomplete information. In stark contrast to the theoretical predictions, we find no effect of team size on volunteering behavior. With the use of our control treatments, we can show that workers react to free-riding incentives provided by the volunteering setting in general, but do not react strategically to the team size. We show that the result is robust to several further factors.

Suggested Citation

Hillenbrand, Adrian and Werner, Tobias and Winter, Fabian, Volunteering at the Workplace under Incomplete Information: Teamsize Does Not Matter (February 10, 2020). MPI Collective Goods Discussion Paper, No. 2020/4, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3537569 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3537569

Adrian Hillenbrand

Max Planck Society for the Advancement of the Sciences - Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods ( email )

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

Tobias Werner

University of Duesseldorf ( email )

Universitätsstraße 1
Dusseldorf, 40225
Germany

Fabian Winter (Contact Author)

Max-Planck-Institute for Research on Collective Goods ( email )

Kurt Schumacher Str 10
Bonn, 53113
Germany

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