Indirect Reciprocity and Strategic Reputation Building in an Experimental Helping Game

D Engelmann, U Fischbacher

Research output: Working paper

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We study indirect reciprocity and strategic reputation building in an experimental helping game. At any time only half of the subjects can build a reputation. This allows us to study both pure indirect reciprocity that is not contaminated by strategic reputation building and the impact of incentives for strategic repuatation building on the helping rate. We ..nd that while pure indirect reciprocity appears to be important, the helping choice seems to be influenced at least as much by strategic considerations. Strategic do better than non-strategic players and non-reciprocal do better than reciprocal players, casting doubt on previously proposed evolutionary explanations for indirect reciprocity.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEgham
Publication statusPublished - 15 Sept 2004


  • indirect reciprocity
  • reputation
  • experimental economics

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