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    Trust, trustworthiness and social networks: playing a trust game when networks are formed in the lab

    Di Cagno, D. and Sciubba, Emanuela (2010) Trust, trustworthiness and social networks: playing a trust game when networks are formed in the lab. Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization 75 (2), pp. 156-167. ISSN 0167-2681.

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    This paper investigates the impact of network formation on trust and trustworthiness. We run a laboratory experiment where, in sequence, networks are generated endogenously within an anonymous group and subjects play a trust game. The experimental design includes two main treatments and a baseline: in the baseline subjects play a trust game with no networks being formed, in treatment NT the network building phase precedes the trust game, and in treatment TN the network game is played at the end. This allows us to identify the two main factors through which networks impact on trust and trustworthi- ness: information accrued to subjects through social interaction (when this occurs first) and reputation (when it follows). We find that in NT, the overall level of trust is lower but offers are directed to more trustworthy recipients. A common past history matters in determining whom to trust (information value of networks). In TN, continuation play enforces higher levels of trust and trustworthiness (reputation and enforced reciprocity). Profits that subjects make in the trust game are higher in the presence of social interaction, and significantly so when network formation informs the decision of whom to trust.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Network formation, trust game, experiments
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Business and Law > Birkbeck Business School
    Depositing User: Emanuela Sciubba
    Date Deposited: 03 Jun 2013 10:15
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:04


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