"Do the right thing" for whom? An experiment on ingroup favouritism, group assorting and moral suasion

Bilancini, Ennio, Boncinelli, Leonardo, Capraro, Valerio ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0579-0166, Celadin, Tatiana and Di Paolo, Roberto (2020) "Do the right thing" for whom? An experiment on ingroup favouritism, group assorting and moral suasion. Judgment and Decision Making, 15 (2) . pp. 182-192. ISSN 1930-2975

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Abstract

In this paper we investigate the effect of moral suasion on ingroup favouritism. We report a well-powered, pre-registered, two-stage 2x2 mixed-design experiment. In the first stage, groups are formed on the basis of how participants answer to a set of questions, concerning non-morally relevant issues in one treatment (assorting on non-moral preferences), and morally relevant issues in another treatment (assorting on moral preferences). In the second stage, participants choose how to split a given amount of money between participants of their own group and participants of the other group, first in the baseline setting and then in a setting where they are told to do what they believe to be morally right (moral suasion). Our main results are: (i) in the baseline, participants tend to favour their own group to a greater extent when groups are assorted according to moral preferences, compared to when they are assorted according to non-moral preferences; (ii) the net effect of moral suasion is to decrease ingroup favouritism, but there is also a non-negligible proportion of participants for whom moral suasion increases ingroup favouritism; (iii) the effect of moral suasion is substantially stable across group assorting and four pre-registered individual characteristics (gender, political orientation, religiosity, pro-life vs pro-choice ethical convictions).

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > Business School > Economics
Item ID: 29361
Notes on copyright: Copyright: © 2020. The authors license this article under the terms of the http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
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Depositing User: Valerio Capraro
Date Deposited: 28 Feb 2020 08:42
Last Modified: 30 Apr 2020 03:35
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/29361

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