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Who never tells a lie?

Vanberg, Christoph

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Abstract

Erat and Gneezy (2012) conduct an experiment to test whether people avoid lying in a situation where doing so would lead to a Pareto improvement. They conclude that many people exhibit such a "pure lie aversion." I argue that the experiment does not provide a reliable test for such an aversion, and that the evidence does not support the authors' conclusion. I conduct two new experiments which are explicitly designed to test for a 'pure' aversion to lying, and find no evidence for the existence of such a motivation. I discuss the implications of the findings for moral behavior and rule following more generally.

Item Type: Working paper
Series Name: Discussion Paper Series, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics
Volume: 0581
Place of Publication: Heidelberg
Date Deposited: 10 Feb 2015 14:38
Date: February 2015
Number of Pages: 26
Faculties / Institutes: The Faculty of Economics and Social Studies > Alfred-Weber-Institut for Economics
Subjects: 330 Economics
Uncontrolled Keywords: Lying; Deception; Morality; Ethics; Experiments
Schriftenreihe ID: Discussion Paper Series / University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics
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