Experimental Design Details
3 symmetric agents make costless proposals in an unstructured setting to bargain over a decaying surplus for 150 seconds. The surplus is 12 points that individuals can allocate among themselves. Initially, each point is worth €3. Thus, initially, subjects have €3× 12 points = €36 to divide within their group. The exchange rate of €3 declines at a rate of €0.02 per second. We implement majority decision rule with a ratification period of 10 seconds. That is, bargaining ends, when an agreement is reached (when at least two participants continuously agree on the allocation of points for 10 seconds) or when the exchange rate reaches €0 per point. If there is no agreement after the exchange rate has reached €0 per point, bargaining ends, and no one receives any points. If an agreement is finalized, potential subject earnings are determined by the number of points allocated to him/her and the exchange rate at the time when the allocation is confirmed (when 10 second ratification period expires).
At the beginning of the experiment, subjects complete a short demographics questionnaire that includes a question about their sex. They receive instructions about the bargaining game and complete 20 minute tutorial to learn to use the computer interface to make decisions. The above bargaining game is repeated 12 times (subjects participate in 12 rounds of the bargaining interactions). In each round, subjects are randomly rematched within their matching group. The feedback between rounds includes information on whether an agreement has been reached, the number of points allocated to the subject, the exchange rate at which the allocation has been confirmed.
At the end of the 12 rounds, subjects answer questions of a survey module for measuring risk aversion, time discounting, trust, altruism, positive and negative reciprocity (Falk et al, 2018), as well as competitiveness (Reuben et al). They complete a cognitive reflection test. We include questions about the purpose of the experiment and salience of the information about the gender composition of the group.
One out of twelve rounds is randomly selected for payment. Expected per subject payment is €17 (including €5 show up payment). Experiment is coded in z-Tree (Fischbacher, 2007) and subjects are recruited using ORSEE (Greiner, 2015) at BEElab, Maastricht University.
We are planning to run 12 sessions in the week of February 18-22, 2019. Each session consists of either all female matching group of 12 subjects AND all male matching group of 12 subjects, OR female majority matching group of 12 subjects AND male majority matching group of 12 subjects. In such a way, our sessions are always gender balanced. This feature may be useful, if we decide to run additional treatments with no information about the gender composition of the group.