Uncovering in-group bias in preferences for redistribution: a survey experiment in Italy

Last registered on May 02, 2022

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
Uncovering in-group bias in preferences for redistribution: a survey experiment in Italy
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0008591
Initial registration date
November 21, 2021

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
November 22, 2021, 6:59 AM EST

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

Last updated
May 02, 2022, 5:18 AM EDT

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

Locations

Region

Primary Investigator

Affiliation
UAB

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
PI Affiliation

Additional Trial Information

Status
In development
Start date
2021-11-23
End date
2022-05-30
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial does not extend or rely on any prior RCTs.
Abstract
Given the important role of perceptions of immigration, and its potential connection with perceptions of inequality to explain preferences for redistribution, we propose to analyze jointly the two phenomena for two reasons. First, Western countries are experiencing both a growing level of inequality and immigration. Second, perceptions and public preferences need to be understood in a multidimensional framework since people hold many perceptions that affect many policy views. Following the above arguments, we test the hypothesis that redistributive policies might be better understood by using both information on inequality and immigration perceptions. To test this, we will use a survey experiment in Italy following a burgeoning stream of literature using informational treatments to investigate self-reported redistributive preferences. In particular, we will manipulate perceptions on inequality and immigration using four informational treatments where three of them interact information on inequality with different information on immigration. In the first treatment, we provide information on inequality by stressing differences between rich and poor (treatment 1). In the second treatment, we provide information on inequality as in treatment 1 but also information on the the native-immigrants composition of poverty in Italy (treatment 2). In treatment 3, information on inequality as in treatment 1 is interacted with information on the cultural diversity of immigrants in terms of religion and country of origin (treatment 3); finally, the last treatment includes the three information on inequality, the native-immigrants composition of poverty, and the cultural diversity of immigrants (treatment 4). In so doing, we capture the multidimensionality of perceptions. But we also capture the multidimensionality of redistributive preferences by distinguishing between general preference for redistribution, preferences over tax rate, preferences over public spending sectors, support for poor benefits, support for the inclusion of migrants in welfare programs.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Bruni, Riccardo, Alessandro Gioffre and Maria Marino. 2022. "Uncovering in-group bias in preferences for redistribution: a survey experiment in Italy." AEA RCT Registry. May 02. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.8591
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Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
Intervention Start Date
2021-11-23
Intervention End Date
2022-02-28

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
preferences for redistribution, preferences for taxing the rich, preferences for allocation of public spending, support for poor benefits (including or not migrants), attitutes towards migration (in terms of welfare), preferences for donation
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
For the design of the experiment, we rely on a national representative sample of 3500 individuals randomly allocated to 5 groups, one control and 4 treated. The latter groups are given information through short animated videos. The first treatment is designed to manipulate only perceptions of inequality by proving information on the increasing gap between poor and rich people. The second treatment repeats the information of treatment 1 on inequality but adds information on the native-immigrants composition of poverty in Italy. The third treatment contains information on inequality (as in treatment 1) and diversity among the immigrant population. The latter is given by providing information on the increasing diversity in the Italian society by offering data on the country of origin and the religion of immigrants living in Italy. A final treatment will combine all the above information, about inequality, the native-immigrants composition of poverty and their cultural diversity.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
randomization done by a computer
Randomization Unit
individual
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
5 groups
Sample size: planned number of observations
N=3500
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
700 by treatment arms
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Comissió d'Ètica en l'Experimentació Animal i Humana (UAB)
IRB Approval Date
2021-11-19
IRB Approval Number
N/A
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