Bridging the Gap between the Economics Lab and the Field: Dictator Games and Donations
Xinghua Wang, Daniel Navarro-Martinez
Published : April, 2023
URL to this Article: http://doi-org-s.vpn.dufe.edu.cn:8118/10.1017/jdm.2023.19
There is growing concern about the extent to which economic games played in the laboratory generalize to social behaviors outside the lab. Here, we show that it is possible to make a game much more predictive of field behavior by bringing contextual elements from the field to the lab. We report three experiments where we present the same participants with different versions of the dictator game and with two different field situations. The games are designed to include elements that make them progressively more similar to the field. We find a dramatic increase in lab–field correlations as contextual elements are incorporated, which has wide-ranging implications for experiments on economic decision making.