Different although Equal: An Experimental Investigation of Inter- and Intragenerational Differences in Corrupt Behavior facing Germany's East-West Stigma

Last registered on April 17, 2021


Trial Information

General Information

Different although Equal: An Experimental Investigation of Inter- and Intragenerational Differences in Corrupt Behavior facing Germany's East-West Stigma
Initial registration date
February 10, 2020
Last updated
April 17, 2021, 3:29 AM EDT



Primary Investigator

Paderborn University

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
BTU Cottbus
PI Affiliation
BTU Cottbus

Additional Trial Information

On going
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
30 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Allensbach Institute consulted adolescents between 15 and 24 years in Germany to understand their educational situation, their evaluation of future perspectives, and their attitude towards current social and economic challenges. This survey reports crucial differences between young people in East and West Germany. This result is remarkable considering that this generation grew up in a unified Germany. Nevertheless, the youth seems to be strongly shaped by economic, cultural and social differences that were once established in the divided Germany. These differences may stem from acquired preferences concerning solidarity, state intervention and the distribution of income.
Our goal is to understand if differences revealed in cooperation and solidarity, as well as pro-state attitudes and governmental control are still prevalent among young Germans, who are not directly influenced by two different regimes. Additionally, we want to compare these results with those of older generations, who actually lived under different regimes in one state. We aim to contribute to the literature by playing the bribery game in an experimental setting with groups of different age in East and West Germany.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Auer, Thorsten, Timo Berg and Christin Hoffmann. 2021. "Different although Equal: An Experimental Investigation of Inter- and Intragenerational Differences in Corrupt Behavior facing Germany's East-West Stigma." AEA RCT Registry. April 17. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.5397-2.1
Experimental Details


We play a bribery game with different groups concerning age and origin in Germany. We implement both games in an online environment avoiding a strictly laboratory setting and this way being able to include different groups in their natural environment.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Bribery Game: Decisions to make a transfer by one player for the acceptance of a request by the other player. This player decides to accept the transfer first and later the request. They can build a strategy over several rounds for interaction among both players.
Main outcome is the amont of transfer payments and the rate of acceptance by the other player.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Differences between generations and origin of people in Germany
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
We intend to contribute to the literature by running an experiment in an online environment. We use ClassEx in order to run the experiments (Giamattei & Lambsdorff, 2019). We aim to collect data for different age groups in East and West Germany.
Regarding the bribery game, pairs will be matched and make concecutive decisions depending on the action of the other player. Decisions will only have an impact on the outcome of the partner.
Experimental Design Details
In the bribery game, one player will decide on a transfer amount, while the other player accepts or rejects the offer and consecutively implements a strategy X or Y with different consequences including a drop out lottery for both players when agreeing on a transfer. This procedure will be repeated over 10 rounds.
Randomization Method
Randomization done by the experimental program's algorithm
Randomization Unit
Overall stratified randomization by age and region.
In the game randomization on the individual level.
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
2 * 120 (for the Eastern and Western federal state)
Sample size: planned number of observations
120 students, 120 seniors
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
60 students East Germany, 60 students West Germany, 60 seniors East Germany, 60 seniors West Germany
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Ethics committee of Paderborn University
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number


Post Trial Information

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Is the intervention completed?
Data Collection Complete
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Reports & Other Materials