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Which Hat to Wear? Impact of Natural Identities on Coordination and Cooperation

Resource Type
Dataset : experimental data
  • Chen, Yan (University of Michigan)
  • Li, Sherry Xin (University of Texas at Dallas)
  • Liu, Tracy Xiao (Tsinghua University)
  • Shih, Margaret (UCLA)
Publication Date
Funding Reference
  • National Science Foundation
    • Award Number: SES0720943
Free Keywords
social identity; diversity; prisoner’s dilemma; minimum-effort game; experiment
  • Abstract

    As the workforce becomes increasingly diverse, motivating individuals from different backgrounds to work together effectively is a major challenge facing organizations. In an experiment conducted at a large public university in the United States, we manipulate the salience of participants’ multidimensional natural identities and investigate the effects of identity on coordination and cooperation in a series of minimum-effort and prisoner’s dilemma games. By priming a fragmenting (ethnic) identity, we find that, compared to the control, participants are significantly less likely to choose high effort in the minimum-effort games, leading to less efficient coordination. In comparison, priming a common organization (school) identity significantly increases the choice of a rational joint payoff maximizing strategy in a prisoner’s dilemma game.
Temporal Coverage
  • 2008-05-01 / 2012-07-31
    Time Period: Thu May 01 00:00:00 EDT 2008--Tue Jul 31 00:00:00 EDT 2012
  • 2008-05-01 / 2008-07-31
    Collection Date(s): Thu May 01 00:00:00 EDT 2008--Thu Jul 31 00:00:00 EDT 2008
  • 2012-06-01 / 2012-07-31
    Collection Date(s): Fri Jun 01 00:00:00 EDT 2012--Tue Jul 31 00:00:00 EDT 2012
Geographic Coverage
  • Michigan, USA
Sampled Universe
Students from the two ethnic groups, Caucasians and Asians, at University of Michigan participated in the lab experiments.
This study is freely available to the general public via web download.
  • Is version of
    DOI: 10.3886/E120862
  • Chen, Yan, Sherry Xin Li, Tracy Xiao Liu, and Margaret Shih. “Which Hat to Wear? Impact of Natural Identities on Coordination and Cooperation.” Games and Economic Behavior 84 (March 2014): 58–86.
    • ID: 10.1016/j.geb.2013.12.002 (DOI)

Update Metadata: 2020-08-30 | Issue Number: 1 | Registration Date: 2020-08-30

Chen, Yan; Li, Sherry Xin; Liu, Tracy Xiao; Shih, Margaret (2020): Which Hat to Wear? Impact of Natural Identities on Coordination and Cooperation. Version: 1. ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. Dataset.