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Voluntary industry standards: an experimental investigation of a Greek gift

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Schmid, Julia

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Corporate Editor Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung gGmbH
Abstract One reason for firms to voluntarily increase their environmental or social production standards is to prevent consumers from lobbying for stricter mandatory standards. In this sense, voluntary overcompliance serves as a Greek gift, as consumers might be worse off in the end. Strategically, a Greek gift deteriorates the consumer's incentive for lobbying and, as such, might be unkind. In many experiments it was shown that unkind actions which decrease the other's payoff are punished by negative reciprocal behavior. This paper experimentally investigates whether negative reciprocity can also be observed if unkind behavior is not directed at payoffs but rather at a deterioration of strategic incentives. (author's abstract)
Keywords experiment; agreement on objectives; voluntariness; consumer; reciprocity; industry; standardization (meth.)
Classification Sociology of Economics
Document language English
Publication Year 2015
City Berlin
Page/Pages 29 p.
Series Discussion Papers / Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung, Forschungsschwerpunkt Markt und Entscheidung, Abteilung Verhalten auf Märkten, SP II 2015-206
Status Published Version; reviewed
Licence Deposit Licence - No Redistribution, No Modifications