Does impartial reasoning matter in economic decisions? An experimental result about distributive (un)fairness in a production context

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Published 25-05-2020
Laura Marcon Pedro Francés-Gómez Marco Faillo

Abstract

The Rawlsian social contract presents the veil of ignorance as a thought experiment that should induce agents to behave more fairly within a distributive context. This study uses a laboratory experiment to test the effect of actual reasoning behind the veil, as a moral cue, in a Dictator Game with taking and production. The main hypothesis claims that reflection from an impartial perspective should lead subjects to put themselves in the shoes of who could be the least benefited. Against our expectations, the impact of the moral cue was null and no attempt to rebalance the unjustified differences was observed.

How to Cite

Marcon, L., Francés-Gómez, P., & Faillo, M. (2020). Does impartial reasoning matter in economic decisions? An experimental result about distributive (un)fairness in a production context. THEORIA, 35(2), 217–233. https://doi.org/10.1387/theoria.21011
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Keywords

justice, social contract, veil of ignorance, experiments, Dictator's Game

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