NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Stephen Leider

University of Michigan
Ross School of Business
701 Tappan Street R4486
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

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NBER Working Papers and Publications

May 2007Directed Altruism and Enforced Reciprocity in Social Networks: How Much is A Friend Worth?
with Markus M. Möbius, Tanya Rosenblat, Quoc-Anh Do: w13135
We conduct field experiments in a large real-world social network to examine why decision makers treat friends more generously than strangers. Subjects are asked to divide surplus between themselves and named partners at various social distances, where only one of the decisions is implemented. In order to separate altruistic and future interaction motives, we implement an anonymous treatment where neither player is told at the end of the experiment which decision was selected for payment and a non-anonymous treatment where both players are told. Moreover, we include both games where transfers increase and decrease social surplus to distinguish between different future interaction channels including signaling one's generosity and enforced reciprocity, where the decision maker treats the par...

Published: The Quarterly Journal of Economics (2009) 124 (4): 1815-1851. doi: 10.1162/qjec.2009.124.4.1815

 
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