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Journal Article

Could shame and honor save cooperation?

MPS-Authors
http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons56973

Traulsen,  Arne
Research Group Evolutionary Theory, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons56825

Milinski,  Manfred
Department Evolutionary Ecology, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Max Planck Society;

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Fulltext (public)

Jacquet_CIB_2012.pdf
(Publisher version), 532KB

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Citation

Jacquet, J., Hauert, C., Traulsen, A., & Milinski, M. (2012). Could shame and honor save cooperation? Communicative & Integrative Biology, 5(2), 1-5. doi:10.1098/rsbl.2011.03.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-000F-D32D-F
Abstract
Shame and honor are mechanisms that expose behavior that falls outside the social norm. With recent six-player public goods experiments, we demonstrated that the threat of shame or the promise of honor led to increased cooperation. Participants were told in advance that after ten rounds two participants would be asked to come forward and write their names on the board in front of the fellow group members. In the shame treatment, the least cooperative players were exposed and wrote their names under the sentence “I donated least” while the honored participants wrote their name under “I donated most.” In both the shame and honor treatments, participants contributed approximately 50% more to the public good, as compared with the control treatment in which all players retained their anonymity. Here, we also discuss how shame and honor differ from full transparency, and some of the challenges to understanding how anonymity and exposure modify behavior.