Learning about other's rewards: punishment and sorting in hierarchical groups

Last registered on September 13, 2020

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
Learning about other's rewards: punishment and sorting in hierarchical groups
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0006252
Initial registration date
August 07, 2020

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
August 10, 2020, 10:48 AM EDT

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.

Last updated
September 13, 2020, 5:35 PM EDT

Last updated is the most recent time when changes to the trial's registration were published.

Locations

Region

Primary Investigator

Affiliation
Duke University

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
Duke University

Additional Trial Information

Status
In development
Start date
2020-08-10
End date
2021-10-31
Secondary IDs
Abstract
We run a online experiment to understand what is the effect of learning other players' payment in a hierarchical group. The participants will complete two games: a costly punishment game and a sorting task. In the punishment game the players can reduce the payment of the other group members at a cost, while in the sorting task they will choose which group would they want to join. We randomly vary the information participants see about their peers' payment.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Kiss, Andrea and Victoria Lee. 2020. "Learning about other's rewards: punishment and sorting in hierarchical groups." AEA RCT Registry. September 13. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.6252
Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
We randomly vary the amount of information that the players have about others' payment.
Intervention Start Date
2020-08-10
Intervention End Date
2020-10-30

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Punishment behavior, choice in sorting task.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
We specify the outcomes in the pre-analysis plan.

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Beliefs about self, beliefs about other's payments, estimated social preferences.
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
We specify the outcomes in the pre-analysis plan.

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
Our main experimental variation changes the information that a participant has about other players' payment. We will test how information changes the agents behavior in two games: in a costly punishment game and in a sorting game.

The detailed experimental design is in the pre-analysis plan.
Experimental Design Details
The detailed experimental design is in the pre-analysis plan. Here we provide a summary.

The experiment follows the frame of a workplace, where people are organized to working-groups of three people and get a supervisor. The supervisor learns the quality of the workers and then allocates a fixed amount of money among the workers. One worker in each team, the agent, is randomized into one of the two experimental conditions. In the transparency condition, the agent learns the entire allocation that the supervisor chose and also the supervisor's payment. In the secrecy condition, however, the agent sees only her own payment. Next, the agent participates in a punishment game. She can reduce the points of others at a cost.

The other game is a sorting game in which the agents recieve two offers from two teams and they will have to choose which one they would like to choose. We vary the information level within-subject in this game: each participant completes the task in a secrecy condition (when they only know their own payment in their future teams) and in a transparency condition (when they know everyone's payment in the two teams.
Randomization Method
The randomization is implemented by the survey software.
Randomization Unit
individual
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
350 people
Sample size: planned number of observations
350 people
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
In the punishment game: 150 individuals in the hidden information, 150 individuals in the full information.
The sorting game is a within subject variation.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Duke University Campus Institutional Review Board
IRB Approval Date
2020-07-20
IRB Approval Number
2021-0024
Analysis Plan

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Post-Trial

Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Intervention

Is the intervention completed?
No
Data Collection Complete
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?
No

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Reports & Other Materials