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The Pied Piper: Prizes, incentives, and motivation crowding-in

Bruni, Luigino, Pelligra, Vittorio, Reggiani, Tommaso and Rizzolli, Matteo 2020. The Pied Piper: Prizes, incentives, and motivation crowding-in. Journal of Business Ethics 166 , pp. 263-658. 10.1007/s10551-019-04154-3

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Abstract

In mainstream business and economics, prizes such as the Presidential Medal of Freedom are understood as special types of incentives, with the peculiar features of being awarded in public, and of having largely symbolic value. Informed by both historical considerations and philosophical instances, our study defines fundamental theoretical differences between incentives and prizes. The conceptual factors highlighted by our analytical framework are then tested through a laboratory experiment. The experimental exercise aims to analyze how prizes and incentives impact actual individuals’ behavior differently. Our results show that both incentives (monetary and contingent) and prizes (non-monetary and discretional rewards) boost motivation to perform if awarded publicly, but only prizes crowd in motivation promoting virtuous attitude.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BJ Ethics
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
Publisher: Springer Verlag (Germany)
ISSN: 0167-4544
Funders: DFG Research Unit FOR 1371: Incentives in Firms: Compensation, Ethics, and Behavior
Date of Acceptance: 22 March 2019
Last Modified: 22 Oct 2020 12:52
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/129104

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