Do Social Preferences Increase Productivity? Field Experimental Evidence from Fishermen in Toyama Bay
University of Aberdeen Working Paper Series
33 Pages Posted: 9 Aug 2005
Date Written: July 2005
We provide a reason for the wider economics profession to take social preferences, a concern for the outcomes achieved by other reference agents, seriously. Although we show that student measures of social preference elicited in an experiment have little external validity when compared to measures obtained from a field experiment with a population of participants who face a social dilemma in their daily lives (i.e., team production), we do find strong links between the social preferences of our field participants and their productivity at work. We also find that the stock of social preferences evolves endogenously with respect to how widely team production is utilized.
Keywords: field experiment, social preference, income pooling, productivity
JEL Classification: C93, D21, D24, H41, J24, M52, M54, Z13
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