Complex tasks and motivating crowdworkers – a natural experiment

Last registered on January 14, 2021

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
Complex tasks and motivating crowdworkers – a natural experiment
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0006744
Initial registration date
December 01, 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
December 01, 2020, 1:25 PM EST

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

Last updated
January 14, 2021, 2:57 PM EST

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

Locations

Region

Primary Investigator

Affiliation
WZB Berlin

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
WZB Berlin

Additional Trial Information

Status
In development
Start date
2020-12-03
End date
2021-12-31
Secondary IDs
Abstract
Crowdsourcing has become more popular in recent years. However, not much is known about how to motivate crowdworkers except for the use of monetary incentives. This becomes even more important when they are conducting tasks that require high engagement but for which the objective quality is difficult to assess. Such tasks might include video, picture, or text classifications and ratings. Per piece payments may increase the speed but actually reduce the quality. In an online experiment, we study the use of (performance unrelated) recognition and positive versus negative framing regarding (performance-based) payment. We use different (more or less objective) performance measures as well as measures of (objective and subjective) crowdworkers’ motivation and (subjective) job satisfaction.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Adena, Maja and Julian Harke. 2021. "Complex tasks and motivating crowdworkers – a natural experiment." AEA RCT Registry. January 14. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.6744
Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
Intervention Start Date
2020-12-03
Intervention End Date
2021-04-30

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
job satisfaction
worker motivation
performance

see the attachment for details
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
We follow a 3x2 between-subjects design.
The differences in the first dimension concern the inclusion of recognition: Control treatment (C) is the treatment without any specific recognition; treatment R includes four recognition phrases; and treatment A includes four appreciation phrases.
The second dimension consist of positive versus negative framing regarding the performance dependent payment.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization by a computer.
Randomization Unit
individuals
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
no clusters
Sample size: planned number of observations
around 4,500 individuals
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
around 750 individuals per treatment
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
WZB Research Ethics Committee
IRB Approval Date
2020-01-15
IRB Approval Number
2019/5/82
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