NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Confucianism and Preferences: Evidence from Lab Experiments in Taiwan and China

Elaine M. Liu, Juanjuan Meng, Joseph Tao-yi Wang

NBER Working Paper No. 19615
Issued in November 2013
NBER Program(s):   DEV

This paper investigates how Confucianism affects individual decision making in Taiwan and in China. We found that Chinese subjects in our experiments became less accepting of Confucian values, such that they became significantly more risk loving, less loss averse, and more impatient after being primed with Confucianism, whereas Taiwanese subjects became significantly less present-based and were inclined to be more trustworthy after being primed by Confucianism. Combining the evidence from the incentivized laboratory experiments and subjective survey measures, we found evidence that Chinese subjects and Taiwanese subjects reacted differently to Confucianism.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w19615

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