Self-Signaling in Moral Voting

Lydia Mechtenberg, Grischa Perino, Nicolas Treich, Jean-Robert Tyran, Stephanie Wang

This paper presents a two-wave survey experiment on self-image concerns in moral voting. We elicit votes on the so-called Horncow Initiative. This initiative required subsidization of farmers who refrain from dehorning. We investigate how non-consequentialist and non-deontological messages changing the moral self-signaling value of a Yes vote affect selection and processing of consequentialist information, and reported voting behavior. We find that a message enhancing the self-signaling value of a Yes vote is effective: voters agree more with arguments in favor of the initiative, anticipate more frequently voting in favor, and report more frequently having voted in favor of the initiative.

Vienna Center for Experimental Economics, Department of Economics, Rectorate
External organisation(s)
Universität Hamburg, Université Toulouse-I-Capitole, University of Pittsburgh
No. of pages
Publication date
Austrian Fields of Science 2012
502045 Behavioural economics
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