Player types and self-impression management in dictatorship games: Two experiments

J. Keith Murnighan, John M. Oesch, Madan Pillutla

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


Recent experimental research on dictatorship games shows that many dictators share their outcomes with unknown, anonymous others. The data suggests that dictators can be "typed" as rational (taking the maximum), equal (splitting outcomes equally), or "other." This paper experimentally tests the self-impression management model, which predicts that individuals act to show themselves in a positive light, even when they are the only observer of their own behavior. The model predicts that the "other" type of dictator will avoid being greedy by taking more only as their choices are increasingly restricted. Results from two experiments support the model's predictions. The conclusion advocates differentiating basic psychological motivations in modeling individual behavior. Journal of Economic Literature Classification Numbers: C78, C91, D63.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)388-414
Number of pages27
JournalGames and Economic Behavior
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Finance
  • Economics and Econometrics


Dive into the research topics of 'Player types and self-impression management in dictatorship games: Two experiments'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this