Self-Signaling in Moral Voting

36 Pages Posted: 8 Mar 2021

See all articles by Lydia Mechtenberg

Lydia Mechtenberg

University of Hamburg

Grischa Perino

University of Hamburg

Nicolas Treich

French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Jean-Robert Tyran

University of Vienna; University of Copenhagen - Department of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Stephanie Wang

University of Pittsburgh

Date Written: January 4, 2021

Abstract

This paper presents a two-wave survey experiment on self-image concerns in moral voting. We elicit votes on the so-called Horncow Initiative. This initiative required subsidization of farmers who refrain from dehorning. We investigate how non-consequentialist and non-deontological messages changing the moral self-signaling value of a Yes vote affect selection and processing of consequentialist information, and reported voting behavior. We find that a message enhancing the self-signaling value of a Yes vote is effective: voters agree more with arguments in favor of the initiative, anticipate more frequently voting in favor, and report more frequently having voted in favor of the initiative.

Keywords: moral bias, voting, multi-wave field experiment, information avoidance

JEL Classification: C93, D72, D91

Suggested Citation

Mechtenberg, Lydia and Perino, Grischa and Treich, Nicolas and Tyran, Jean-Robert and Wang, Stephanie, Self-Signaling in Moral Voting (January 4, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3762502 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3762502

Lydia Mechtenberg

University of Hamburg ( email )

Allende-Platz 1
Hamburg, 20146
Germany

Grischa Perino

University of Hamburg ( email )

Welckerstr. 8
Hamburg, 20354
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://sites.google.com/site/gperinosite/

Nicolas Treich

French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA) ( email )

147, rue de l'Universite
Paris Cedex 07, 78-Yvelines 75338
France
+33 0 1 42 75 90 00 (Phone)
+33 0 1 47 05 99 66 (Fax)

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

Jean-Robert Tyran (Contact Author)

University of Vienna ( email )

Oskar-Morgenstern-Platz 1
Vienna, Vienna 1090
Austria

HOME PAGE: http://homepage.univie.ac.at/jean-robert.tyran/

University of Copenhagen - Department of Economics ( email )

Ă˜ster Farimagsgade 5
Bygning 26
1353 Copenhagen K.
Denmark
+45 353 23 027 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.econ.ku.dk/tyran/

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Stephanie Wang

University of Pittsburgh ( email )

135 N Bellefield Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15260
United States

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