Prosociality and competition: Evidence from a long-run field experiment (joint work with Ranjita Rajan and Michela Tincani)

  • Date: Jul 6, 2022
  • Time: 04:00 PM (Local Time Germany)
  • Speaker: Fabian Kosse (University of Munich)
  • Location: MPI
  • Room: Ground Floor

We present results from the first study to examine the causal impact of enduring competition on the development of prosociality. Inspired by the literature on tournaments within firms, which shows that competitive compensation schemes reduce cooperation in the short-run, we explore if prolonged exposure to a competitive environment attenuates the formation of prosociality. Based on a large-scale and long-run intervention in the education context, we find lower levels of prosociality for students who experienced a 2-year competition period. An implication of our results is that policies intended to support disadvantaged children can have (unintended) side-effects on socio-emotional skills.

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