Header

UZH-Logo

Maintenance Infos

New methods in quantitative ethnography: economic experiments and variation in the price of equality


Efferson, C; Takezawa, M; McElreath, R (2007). New methods in quantitative ethnography: economic experiments and variation in the price of equality. Current Anthropology, 48(6):912-919.

Abstract

We present a new method for quantitatively documenting concerns for economic fairness. In particular we focus on the method’s potential for identifying variation in
prosociality within and across societies. Specifically, we conducted multiple dictator games per player in two small-scale societies. Each game presented the decision maker with a choice between an equitable and an inequitable payoff distribution. The games varied in terms of the type of inequality the decision maker faced and in terms of
the cost to the decision maker of eliminating inequality. This latter variation in cost is what makes the method suitable for identifying the price one is willing to pay for
equality. To analyze the data, we developed a novel set of statistical models that directly link experimental results and player heterogeneity with the formal theory of
inequality aversion. The paper concludes with a discussion of how the experimental method can be generalized to allow maximum flexibility in data analysis.

Abstract

We present a new method for quantitatively documenting concerns for economic fairness. In particular we focus on the method’s potential for identifying variation in
prosociality within and across societies. Specifically, we conducted multiple dictator games per player in two small-scale societies. Each game presented the decision maker with a choice between an equitable and an inequitable payoff distribution. The games varied in terms of the type of inequality the decision maker faced and in terms of
the cost to the decision maker of eliminating inequality. This latter variation in cost is what makes the method suitable for identifying the price one is willing to pay for
equality. To analyze the data, we developed a novel set of statistical models that directly link experimental results and player heterogeneity with the formal theory of
inequality aversion. The paper concludes with a discussion of how the experimental method can be generalized to allow maximum flexibility in data analysis.

Statistics

Citations

5 citations in Web of Science®
5 citations in Scopus®
Google Scholar™

Altmetrics

Downloads

76 downloads since deposited on 19 Mar 2009
5 downloads since 12 months
Detailed statistics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Economics
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
Language:English
Date:December 2007
Deposited On:19 Mar 2009 16:14
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 12:28
Publisher:University of Chicago Press
ISSN:0011-3204
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1086/523016

Download