Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 559064
Title Wage Differentials and Workers’ Effort: Experimental Evidence from Uganda
Author(s) Sseruyange, John; Bulte, Erwin
Source Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics (2019). - ISSN 0305-9049
Department(s) Development Economics
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2019

We organize a real-effort field experiment with varying piece rates to assess the impact of wages and social comparisons on productivity. In addition to analyzing how piece rates and social comparisons affect productivity during the ‘paid stage’ of the experiment, we also consider how they affect effort supply during a voluntary and unpaid follow-up task. Our main results are that effort supply is relatively unresponsive to variation in own earnings, but responds strongly to pay inequality. While we obtain weak support for the hypothesis that positive social comparisons invite extra effort during paid stages of the experiment, our most important finding is that social comparisons matter for voluntary tasks when shirking is cheap. Specifically, positive social comparisons positively affect productivity during unpaid tasks, and negative comparisons have the opposite impact.

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