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CSR and Coordination
Last registered on March 02, 2018


Trial Information
General Information
CSR and Coordination
Initial registration date
March 01, 2018
Last updated
March 02, 2018 4:12 PM EST
Primary Investigator
University of Toronto, Rotman School of Management
Other Primary Investigator(s)
Additional Trial Information
In development
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
While many organizations use corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs to encourage increased worker performance, less is known about CSR's impact on other organizational outcomes that may be of interest to managers. This study provides an initial examination the intra-organizational benefits of CSR on coordination outcomes in work groups. I investigate this question by randomizing participants into CSR or own pay conditions and having them play a coordination game in groups of three in which each individual's payoff is based on the minimum effort chosen by individuals in the group. Prior research has argued that high coordination levels can act as a socially-complex "expectational asset" that cannot be easily imitated or replicated by competitors (Knez and Camerer 1994). Developing strong coordination norms, therefore, could be a key aspect of creating sustainable competitive advantage.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Rooney, Patrick. 2018. "CSR and Coordination." AEA RCT Registry. March 02. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.2748-1.0.
Former Citation
Rooney, Patrick. 2018. "CSR and Coordination." AEA RCT Registry. March 02. http://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/2748/history/26255.
Experimental Details
There will be two periods of coordination game play in this experiment. The intervention will occur in the first period, in which all earnings in the treatment arm will be donated to charity and all earnings in the control arm will be given to participants based on their individual and group performance.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
Key outcome variables include (1) number of groups coordinating at the Pareto optimal point by condition, (2) average number choices by individuals by condition, (3) the variation in number choices by condition, (4) differences in the number choices of prosocial and non-prosocial individuals by condition, and (5) any behavioral spillover effects in period two in outcomes (1-4).
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
Taking cues from prior studies and practices in the field of behavioral economics and psychology, each of these experimental conditions will target roughly 50 participants, for a total of around 100 participants in the study (Peysakhovich & Rand, 2015; Simmons, Nelson, & Simonsohn, 2013). Randomization will occur at the session level. All experiments in this paper will be performed using zTree software (Fischbacher, 2007).

Participants will be randomly divided into groups of three and the experiment will last approximately one hour. After playing the two experimental rounds of playing the weakest link game, individuals will complete a questionnaire that gathers information on demographics, prosociality, risk aversion, Big 5 personality traits, and tendency towards systematizing or empathizing modes of thought (Baron-Cohen, Knickmeyer, & Belmonte, 2005).
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization into sessions will be done in an office by a random number generator on a computer.
Randomization Unit
The unit of randomization will be at the experimental session level.
Was the treatment clustered?
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
The planned number of clusters will be around 2 experimental sessions per each of the two conditions.
Sample size: planned number of observations
The planned number of observations is 2,000 (20 number selections per 100 individuals).
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
There will be around 50 participants in the control and 50 participants in the treatment.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB Name
University of Toronto Research Ethics Board
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
Post Trial Information
Study Withdrawal
Is the intervention completed?
Is data collection complete?
Data Publication
Data Publication
Is public data available?
Program Files
Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials
Relevant Paper(s)