This setting lets you change the way you view articles. You can choose to have articles open in a dialog window, a new tab, or directly in the same window.
Open in Dialog
Open in New Tab
Open in same window

American Economic Review: Vol. 103 No. 4 (June 2013)

Expand

Quick Tools:

Print Article Summary
Export Citation
Sign up for Email Alerts Follow us on Twitter

Explore:

AER - All Issues

AER Forthcoming Articles

The Lure of Authority: Motivation and Incentive Effects of Power

Article Citation

Fehr, Ernst, Holger Herz, and Tom Wilkening. 2013. "The Lure of Authority: Motivation and Incentive Effects of Power." American Economic Review, 103(4): 1325-59.

DOI: 10.1257/aer.103.4.1325

Abstract

Authority and power permeate political, social, and economic life, but empirical knowledge about the motivational origins and consequences of authority is limited. We study the motivation and incentive effects of authority experimentally in an authority-delegation game. Individuals often retain authority even when its delegation is in their material interest—suggesting that authority has nonpecuniary consequences for utility. Authority also leads to overprovision of effort by the controlling parties, while a large percentage of subordinates underprovide effort despite pecuniary incentives to the contrary. Authority thus has important motivational consequences that exacerbate the inefficiencies arising from suboptimal delegation choices.

Article Full-Text Access

Full-text Article

Additional Materials

Authors

Fehr, Ernst (U Zurich)
Herz, Holger (U Zurich)
Wilkening, Tom (U Melbourne)

JEL Classifications

C92: Design of Experiments: Laboratory, Group Behavior
D23: Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
D82: Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design


American Economic Review


Quick Tools:

Sign up for Email Alerts

Follow us on Twitter

Subscription Information
(Institutional Administrator Access)

Explore:

AER - All Issues

AER - Forthcoming Articles

Virtual Field Journals


AEA Member Login:


AEAweb | AEA Journals | Contact Us