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I Lie? We Lie! Why? Experimental Evidence on a Dishonesty Shift in Groups

Kocher, Martin G and Schudy, Simeon and Spantig, Lisa (2018) 'I Lie? We Lie! Why? Experimental Evidence on a Dishonesty Shift in Groups.' Management Science, 64 (9). pp. 3995-4008. ISSN 0025-1909

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Unethical behavior such as dishonesty, cheating and corruption occurs fre-quently in organizations or groups. Recent experimental evidence suggests that there isa stronger inclination to behave immorally in groups than individually. We ask if this isthe case, and if so, why. Using a parsimonious laboratory setup, we study how individualbehavior changes when deciding as a group member. We observe a strong dishonestyshift. This shift is mainly driven by communication within groups and turns out to be inde-pendent of whether group members face payoff commonality or not (i.e., whether othergroup members benefit from one’s lie). Group members come up with and exchange morearguments for being dishonest than for complying with the norm of honesty. Thereby,group membership shifts the perception of the validity of the honesty norm and of itsdistribution in the population.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: dishonesty; lying; group decisions; communication; norms; experiment
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences
Faculty of Social Sciences > Economics, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 16 Sep 2019 12:42
Last Modified: 18 Aug 2022 11:20

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