Skip to main content

The Pied Piper: Prizes, Incentives, and Motivation Crowding-in

“It is clear that the reward lies in the action itself, and that the power of the honorable to attract the minds of men is immense: Its beauty floods our minds and sweeps us along, enchanted with wonder at its brilliance and splendor.”

(Seneca, De Beneficiis 22.2).

He advanced to the council-table:

And, “Please your honors,” said he, “I’m able,

By means of a secret charm, to draw

All creatures living beneath the sun,

That creep or swim or fly or run,

After me so as you never saw!”

(Robert Browning, The Pied Piper of Hamelin 1842).

Abstract

In mainstream business and economics, prizes such as the Presidential Medal of Freedom are understood as special types of incentives, with the peculiar features of being awarded in public, and of having largely symbolic value. Informed by both historical considerations and philosophical instances, our study defines fundamental theoretical differences between incentives and prizes. The conceptual factors highlighted by our analytical framework are then tested through a laboratory experiment. The experimental exercise aims to analyze how prizes and incentives impact actual individuals’ behavior differently. Our results show that both incentives (monetary and contingent) and prizes (non-monetary and discretional rewards) boost motivation to perform if awarded publicly, but only prizes crowd in motivation promoting virtuous attitude.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4

Notes

  1. The “ideology of incentives” (Bruni 2015) goes well beyond the boundaries of economic relations. Grant (2011), who conducted the most systematic research on the history and nature of incentives, offers a vivid repertoire of situations in which incentives are applied and how: “express traffic lanes are set aside during rush hour for cars with more than two passengers. A will stipulates that a daughter will inherit only if she agrees to be a stay-at-home mom. West Virginia pays married couples on welfare an extra $100 per month, funded by a federal program to promote marriage. […] Legislators in South Carolina discuss a proposal to reduce prison sentences for prisoners who donate organs. A soup kitchen feeds the homeless only if they attend a church service first. […] A state legislator suggests paying poor women $1000 to have their tubes tied while others debate making welfare conditional on the use of the Norplant contraceptive device” (p. 1).

  2. This is not to neglect that numerous economists are aware of the complexities and tradeoffs between the use of different types of incentives. For example, see Gneezy et al. (2011), Bowles and Polania-Reyes (2012) and Ashraf and Bandiera (2018) for surveys.

  3. The agency model is a standard model in economics as well as in political sciences. It captures the strategic interaction in which an agent (employee/politician/CEO) is able to make decisions on behalf of the principal (employer/voter/shareholder).

  4. This can go to the extreme where a prize is not awarded if some extrinsic motivation (even self-image) can be traced. For example, this is the case in the canonization process for sainthood within the Catholic Church. Among the requirements to be proclaimed a saint, the candidate’s motivation must be proven to be completely intrinsic. The candidate must have never acted for the purpose of becoming a saint because it would be a sign of the lack of the necessary virtue of humility, and the heroic virtues are the pre-condition to be proclaimed a saint; see the Apostolic Constitution Divinus Perfectionis Magister (January 25, 1983).

  5. Other few quoted examples of the incentive ideology are “Incentives are the essence of economics” (Prendergast 1999, p. 7); “Fame, power, reputation, sex, and love are all important incentives. Economists even think that benevolence responds to incentives” (Cowen and Tabarrok 2015, p. 2); “The basic ‘law’ of behavior is that higher incentives will lead to more effort and higher performance” (Gneezy et al. 2011, p. 1).

  6. See also Manno (1831): “Since in Latin incentivus, whether applied to aerophones, such as flutes or trumpets, signified the sound (incentivum) of those instruments, it was later employed to express those aforementioned incitements and provocations. At that time, one intrepid orator came to realize that, being that man was as aroused by the voice of passion as soldiers were by the sound of trumpets, the transposition of tuba incentiva from the battlefield to humans’ hearts was a mere transliteration of a comparison into a metaphor.”

  7. Among its different meanings, the word “praemium” in classical Latin also mean reward, prize, recompense, gift (Cicero spoke of honores et praemia bene de re publica meritorum et merentium). The Latin–German dictionary by Georges Karl (1998) specifies that this third meaning of praemium is intended as the opposite of “punishment.” A particular contractual dimension appears to be implied by the concept of prize; the medieval-patristic dictionary by Blaise and Chirat (1954) reports two meanings of the word praemium: (i) recompense, reward and (ii) gift, benefit (of redemption).

  8. They are willing to accept to perform the task for a less generous remuneration.

  9. This is a fairly standard task used in lab experiments. For a discussion see also Erkal et al. (2018). For a discussion of the use of lab experiments to understand issues related to effort and labor, see Charness and Kuhn (2011).

  10. Three subjects (all women) who stated that they were over 45 years of age were excluded.

  11. Admittedly, we do not have a good way to control for learning, as this would require additional treatments with no rewards introduced or withdrawn in any phase.

  12. No systematic study has yet focused on the asymmetric adoption of publicity-based reward practices in for-profit companies and non-profit organization. Despite this gap in the literature, a comparative analysis of studies focusing on incentive/prize practices implemented in for-profit companies and non-profit organizations (see Oster 1998; Luthans 2000; Rodwell and Teo 2004; Theuvsen 2004; OpportunityKnocks 2011; Ben-Ner et al. 2011; Speckbacher 2013; Ben-Ner and Ren 2015; DeVaro et al. 2015; Gallus and Frey 2016; Frey and Gallus 2017a, b; WorldatWork 2018a, b) leads to highly suggestive evidence. Monetary incentives are unanimously considered essential in business companies, while public recognition represents a key element for staff retention in non-profit organizations.

References

  • Adams, O., & Hicks, V. (2000). Pay and non-pay incentives, performance and motivation. Human Resources Development Journal, 4(3), 25.

    Google Scholar 

  • Akerlof, G. A., & Kranton, R. E. (2005). Identity and the economics of organizations. The Journal of Economic Perspectives, 19(1), 9–32.

    Google Scholar 

  • Andreoni, J. (1990). Impure altruism and donations to public goods: A theory of warm-glow giving. The Economic Journal, 100(401), 464–477.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ariely, D., Bracha, A., & Meier, S. (2009). Doing good or doing well? Image motivation and monetary incentives in behaving prosocially. American Economic Review, 99(1), 544–555.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ariely, D., Kamenica, E., & Prelec, D. (2008). Man’s search for meaning: The case of Legos. Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 67(3), 671–677.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ashraf, N., & Bandiera, O. (2018). Social incentives in organizations. Annual Review of Economics, 10, 439–463.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ashraf, N., Bandiera, O., & Lee, S. S. (2014). Awards unbundled: Evidence from a natural field experiment. Journal of Economic Behavior Organization, 100, 44–63.

    Google Scholar 

  • Auster, E. R., & Edward Freeman, R. (2013). Values and poetic organizations: Beyond value fit toward values through conversation. Journal of Business Ethics, 113(1), 39–49.

    Google Scholar 

  • Baucus, M. S., & Beck-Dudley, C. L. (2005). Designing ethical organizations: Avoiding the long-term negative effects of rewards and punishments. Journal of Business Ethics, 56(4), 355–370.

    Google Scholar 

  • Beccaria, C. (1764). On crimes and punishments.

  • Bellé, N. (2015). Performance-related pay and the crowding out of motivation in the public sector: A randomized field experiment. Public Administration Review, 75(2), 230–241.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bénabou, R., & Tirole, J. (2003). Intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. The Review of Economic Studies, 70(3), 489–520.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bénabou, R., & Tirole, J. (2006). Incentives and prosocial behavior. The American Economic Review, 96(5), 1652–1678.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bénabou, R., & Tirole, J. (2012). Laws and norms. IZA DP No. 6290.

  • Ben-Ner, A., & Ren, T. (2015). Comparing workplace organization design based on form of ownership: Nonprofit, for-profit, and local government. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, 44(2), 340–359.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ben-Ner, A., Ren, T., & Paulson, D. F. (2011). A sectoral comparison of wage levels and wage inequality in human services industries. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, 40(4), 608–633.

    Google Scholar 

  • Blaise, A., & Chirat, H. (1954). Dictionnaire latin-francais des auteurs chrétiens: Revu spécialement pour le vocabulaire théologique. Le latin chrétien.

  • Bowles, S., & Polania-Reyes, S. (2012). Economic incentives and social preferences: Substitutes or complements? Journal of Economic Literature, 50(2), 368–425.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bradler, C., Dur, R., Neckermann, S., & Non, A. (2016). Employee recognition and performance: A field experiment. Management Science, 62(11), 3085–3099.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bruni, L. (2013). On virtues and awards: Giacinto Dragonetti and the tradition of economia civile in Enlightenment Italy. Journal of the History of Economic Thought, 35(04), 517–535.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bruni, L. (2015) Incentives. In A lexicon of social well-being (pp. 72–75). London: Palgrave Pivot.

  • Bruni, L., & Santori, P. (2018). The plural roots of rewards: Awards and incentives in Aquinas and Genovesi. The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought. https://doi.org/10.1080/09672567.2018.1481989.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Bruni, L., & Smerilli, A. (2014). The economics of values-based organizations: An introduction. Oxford: Routledge.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bruni, L., & Sugden, R. (2000). Moral canals: Trust and social capital in the work of Hume, Smith and Genovesi. Economics and Philosophy, 16(01), 21–45.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bruni, L., & Sugden, R. (2007). The road not taken: How psychology was removed from economics, and how it might be brought back*. The Economic Journal, 117(516), 146–173.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bruni, L., & Sugden, R. (2008). Fraternity: Why the market need not be a morally free zone. Economics and Philosophy, 24(01), 35–64.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bruni, L., & Sugden, R. (2013). Reclaiming virtue ethics for economics. The Journal of Economic Perspectives, 27(4), 141–163.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bruni, L., & Zamagni, S. (2016). Civil economy: Another idea of the market. Newcastle upon Tyne: Agenda Publishing Limited.

    Google Scholar 

  • Camerer, C. F., Dreber, A., Forsell, E., Ho, T.-H., Huber, J., Johannesson, M., et al. (2016). Evaluating replicability of laboratory experiments in economics. Science, 351(6280), 1433–1436.

    Google Scholar 

  • Chandler, D., & Kapelner, A. (2013). Breaking monotony with meaning: Motivation in crowdsourcing markets. Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 90, 123–133.

    Google Scholar 

  • Charness, G., & Kuhn, P. (2011). Lab labor: What can labor economists learn from the lab? In Handbook of labor economics (Vol. 4, pp. 229–330). Amsterdam: Elsevier.

  • Cowen, T., & Tabarrok, A. (2015). Modern principles of microeconomics. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

    Google Scholar 

  • Deci, E. L. (1971). Effects of externally mediated rewards on intrinsic motivation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 18(1), 105.

    Google Scholar 

  • Deci, E. L. (1975). Intrinsic motivation. New York: Plenum Press, Open Library.

    Google Scholar 

  • Deci, E., & Ryan, R. M. (1985). Intrinsic motivation and self-determination in human behavior. New York: Springer.

    Google Scholar 

  • DeVaro, J., Maxwell, N. L., & Morita, H. (2015). Compensation and intrinsic motivation in nonprofit and for-profit organizations. https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2634880.

  • Doerrenberg, P., & Duncan, D. (2014). Experimental evidence on the relationship between tax evasion opportunities and labor supply. European Economic Review, 68, 48–70.

    Google Scholar 

  • Dragonetti, G. (1769). A treatise on virtues and rewards. Pater-Noster-Row: Johnson and Payne, Piccadilly: J. Almon.

  • Ellingsen, T., & Johannesson, M. (2007). Paying respect. The Journal of Economic Perspectives, 21(4), 135–149.

    Google Scholar 

  • Erkal, N., Gangadharan, L., & Koh, B. H. (2018). Monetary and non-monetary incentives in real-effort tournaments. European Economic Review, 101, 528–545.

    Google Scholar 

  • Fabrizi, M., Mallin, C., & Michelon, G. (2014). The role of CEO’s personal incentives in driving corporate social responsibility. Journal of Business Ethics, 124(2), 311–326.

    Google Scholar 

  • Falk, A. (2007). Gift exchange in the field. Econometrica, 75(5), 1501–1511.

    Google Scholar 

  • Festré, A., & Garrouste, P. (2015). Theory and evidence in psychology and economics about motivation crowding out: A possible convergence? Journal of Economic Surveys, 29(2), 339–356.

    Google Scholar 

  • Fischbacher, U. (2007). z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments. Experimental Economics, 10(2), 171–178.

    Google Scholar 

  • Freeman, R. E., & Auster, E. R. (2011). Values, authenticity, and responsible leadership. Journal of Business Ethics, 98, 15–23.

    Google Scholar 

  • Freeman, R. E., & Auster, E. R. (2015). Bridging the values gap: How authentic organizations bring values to life. Oakland, CA: Berrett-Koehler Publishers.

    Google Scholar 

  • Frey, B. S. (2006). Giving and receiving awards. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 1(4), 377–388.

    Google Scholar 

  • Frey, B. S. (2007). Awards as compensation. European Management Review, 4(1), 6–14.

    Google Scholar 

  • Frey, B. S. (2015). Markt und Motivation. Wie ökonomische Anreize die (Arbeits-) Moral verdrängen. Vahlen: München. https://www.lehmanns.de/shop/wirtschaft/32876860-9783800650620-markt-und-motivation.

  • Frey, B. S., & Gallus, J. (2017a). Towards an economics of awards. Journal of Economic Surveys, 31(1), 190–200.

    Google Scholar 

  • Frey, B. S., & Gallus, J. (2017b). Honours versus money: The economics of awards. Oxford: Oxford University.

    Google Scholar 

  • Frey, B. S., & Jegen, R. (2001). Motivation crowding theory. Journal of Economic Surveys, 15(5), 589–611.

    Google Scholar 

  • Frey, B. S., & Oberholzer-Gee, F. (1997). The cost of price incentives: An empirical analysis of motivation crowding-out. The American Economic Review, 87(4), 746–755.

    Google Scholar 

  • Frye, H. P. (2017). Incentives, offers, and community. Economics and Philosophy, 33(3), 367–390.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gallus, J., & Frey, B. S. (2016). Awards as non-monetary incentives. In Evidence-based HRM: A Global Forum for Empirical Scholarship (Vol. 4, No. 1, pp. 81–91). Bingley: Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

  • Genovesi, A. (1776). La logica per gli giovanetti. Stamperia Reale. Naples.

  • Genovesi, A. (1835). Della diceosina o sia della filosofia del giusto e dell’onesto. Milan: Società tipografica de’ classici italiani.

    Google Scholar 

  • Georges Karl, E. (1998). Ausführliches lateinisch-deutsches Handwörterbuch. Unchanged reprint of the eighth improved and increased edition, 2 volumes. Darmstadt: Scientific Book Company, 1998 (reprint of the Hannover edition: Hahnsche Bookstore, 1913/1918).

  • Gill, D., & Prowse, V. L. (2011). A novel computerized real effort task based on sliders. IZA Discussion Paper No. 5801.

  • Gneezy, U., Meier, S., & Rey-Biel, P. (2011). When and why incentives (don’t) work to modify behavior. The Journal of Economic Perspectives, 25(4), 191–209.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gneezy, U., & Rustichini, A. (2000a). Pay enough or don't pay at all. The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 115(3), 791–810.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gneezy, U., & Rustichini, A. (2000b). A fine is a price. The Journal of Legal Studies, 29(1), 1–17.

    Google Scholar 

  • Grant, R. W. (2011). Strings attached: Untangling the ethics of incentives. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Grant, R. W. (2019). Incentives and praise compared: The ethics of motivation. International Review of Economics, 66, 17–28.

    Google Scholar 

  • Greiner, B. (2015). Subject pool recruitment procedures: Organizing experiments with ORSEE. Journal of the Economic Science Association, 1(1), 114–125.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ims, K. J., Pedersen, L. J. T., & Zsolnai, L. (2014). How economic incentives may destroy social, ecological and existential values: The case of executive compensation. Journal of Business Ethics, 123(2), 353–360.

    Google Scholar 

  • Jensen, M., & Murphy, K. (1990). Performance pay and top-management incentives. Journal of Political Economy, 98(2), 225–264.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kahneman, D. J., Knetsch, J. L., & Thaler, R. H. (1990). Experimental tests of the endowment effect and the Coase Theorem. Journal of Political Economy, 98(6), 1325–1348.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kosfeld, M., & Neckermann, S. (2011). Getting more work for nothing? Symbolic awards and worker performance. American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, 3(3), 86–99.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kosfeld, M., Neckermann, S., & Yang, X. (2014). Knowing that you matter, matters! The interplay of meaning, monetary incentives, and worker recognition. IZA Discussion Paper, No. 8055.

  • Kube, S., Maréchal, M. A., & Puppea, C. (2012). The currency of reciprocity: Gift exchange in the workplace. The American Economic Review, 102(4), 1644–1662.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kulshreshtha, P. (2005). Business ethics versus economic incentives: Contemporary issues and dilemmas. Journal of Business Ethics, 60(4), 393–410.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kurland, N. B. (1995). Ethics, incentives, and conflicts of interest: A practical solution. Journal of Business Ethics, 14, 465–475.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lacetera, N., & Macis, M. (2010). Social image concerns and prosocial behavior: Field evidence from a nonlinear incentive scheme. Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 76(2), 225–237.

    Google Scholar 

  • Laffont, J.-J., & Martimort, D. (2002). The theory of incentives. The principal-agent model. Oxford: Princeton University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Levitt, S. D., & Dubner, S. J. (2006). Freakonomics: A rogue economist explores the hidden side of everything. New York: Harper Collins.

    Google Scholar 

  • Levitt, S. D., List, J. A., Neckermann, S., & Sadoff, S. (2016). The behavioralist goes to school: leveraging behavioral economics to improve educational performance. American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 8(4), 183–219.

    Google Scholar 

  • Luthans, K. (2000). Recognition: A powerful, but often overlooked, leadership tool to improve employee performance. Journal of Leadership Studies, 7(1), 31–39.

    Google Scholar 

  • Manno, G. (1831). Della fortuna delle parole. Turin: Fratelli Pomba.

    Google Scholar 

  • Maréchal, M. A., & Thöni, C. (2016). Hidden persuaders: Do small gifts lubricate business negotiations? Working Paper No. 227. University of Zurich, Department of Economics. Available at SSRN https://ssrn.com/abstract=2775290.

  • Mathauer, I., & Imhoff, I. (2006). Health worker motivation in Africa: The role of non-financial incentives and human resource management tools. Human Resources for Health, 4(1), 24.

    Google Scholar 

  • McAdams, R. H. (2015). The expressive powers of law: Theories and limits. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • McGuire, J., Dow, S., & Argheyd, K. (2003). CEO incentives and corporate social performance. Journal of Business Ethics, 45(4), 341–359.

    Google Scholar 

  • Mickel, A. E., & Barron, L. A. (2008). Getting ‘more bang for the buck’ symbolic value of monetary rewards in organizations. Journal of Management Inquiry, 17(4), 329–338.

    Google Scholar 

  • Mirrlees, J. (1999). The theory of moral hazard and unobservable behaviour: Part I. Review of Economic Studies, 66(1), 3–21.

    Google Scholar 

  • Moldovanu, B., Sela, A., & Shi, X. (2007). Contests for status. Journal of Political Economy, 115(2), 338–363.

    Google Scholar 

  • Nadler, J. (2017). Expressive law, social norms, and social groups. Law and Social Inquiry, 42(1), 60–75.

    Google Scholar 

  • Neckermann, S., & Frey, B. S. (2013). And the winner is…? The motivating power of employee awards. The Journal of Socio-economics, 46, 66–77.

    Google Scholar 

  • Neckermann, S., & Yang, X. (2017). Understanding the (unexpected) consequences of unexpected recognition. Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 135, 131–142.

    Google Scholar 

  • OpportunityKnocks. 2011, Engagingthe Nonproft Workforce: Mission, Management and Emotion. Technical report

  • Oster, S. (1998). Executive compensation in the nonprofit sector. Nonprofit Management and Leadership, 8(3), 207–221.

    Google Scholar 

  • Pianigiani, O. (1990). Dizionario etimologico della lingua italiana, I Dioscuri.

  • Porta, P. L. (2018). From Economia Civile to Kameralwissenschaften. The line of descent from Genovesi to Beccaria in pre-Smithian Europe. The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, 25, 531–561.

    Google Scholar 

  • Prendergast, C. (1999). The provision of incentives in firms. Journal of Economic Literature, 37(1), 7–63.

    Google Scholar 

  • Read, D. (2005). Monetary incentives, what are they good for? Journal of Economic Methodology, 12(2), 265–276.

    Google Scholar 

  • Robson, K., Plangger, K., Kietzmann, J. H., McCarthy, I., & Pitt, L. (2015). Is it all a game? Understanding the principles of gamification. Business Horizons, 58(4), 411–420.

    Google Scholar 

  • Rodwell, J., & Teo, S. (2004). Strategic HRM in for-profit and non-profit organizations in a knowledge-intensive industry: The same issues predict performance for both types of organization. Public Management Review, 6(3), 311–331.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sandel, M. J. (2012). What money can’t buy: The moral limits of markets. London: Macmillan.

    Google Scholar 

  • Shoaib, S., & Baruch, Y. (2017). Deviant behavior in a moderated-mediation framework of incentives, organizational justice perception, and reward expectancy. Journal of Business Ethics, 140(1), 1–17.

    Google Scholar 

  • Smerilli, A. (2012). We-thinking and vacillation between frames: Filling a gap in Bacharach’s theory. Theory and Decision, 73(4), 539–560.

    Google Scholar 

  • Speckbacher, G. (2013). The use of incentives in nonprofit organizations. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, 42(5), 1006–1025.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sugden, R. (2003). The logic of team reasoning. Philosophical Explorations, 6(3), 165–181.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sugden, R. (2019). Awards, incentives and mutual benefit. International Review of Economics, 66(1), 5–17.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sunstein, C. (1996). On the expressive function of law. University of Pennsylvania Law Review, 144(5), 2021–2053.

    Google Scholar 

  • Theuvsen, L. (2004). Doing better while doing good: Motivational aspects of pay-for-performance effectiveness in nonprofit organizations. Voluntas: International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations, 15(2), 117–136.

    Google Scholar 

  • Titmuss, R. M. (1970). The gift relationship. From human blood to social policy. London: Allen and Unwin Ltd.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tonin, M., & Vlassopoulos, M. (2013). Experimental evidence of self-image concerns as motivation for giving. Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 90, 19–27.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ward, M. K., & Broniarczyk, S. M. (2011). It’s not me, it’s you: How gift giving creates giver identity threat as a function of social closeness. Journal of Consumer Research, 38(1), 164–181.

    Google Scholar 

  • Weiss, Y., & Fershtman, C. (1998). Social status and economic performance: A survey. European Economic Review, 42(3), 801–820.

    Google Scholar 

  • WorldatWork. (2018a). Incentive pay practices: Nonprofit/government organizations. Technical report.

  • WorldatWork. (2018b). Incentive pay practices: Privately held companies. Technical report.

Download references

Acknowledgements

We thank the Editor Julie A. Nelson, Jonathan Baron, Avner Ben-Ner, Anja Bodenschatz, Philip Brookins, Robert Dur, Christoph Engel, Marco Fabbri, Miloš Fišar, Bruno Frey, Ruth Grant, Werner Güth, Susanne Neckermann, Rainer Michael Rilke, Lorenzo Sacconi, Robert Sugden, Gari Walkowitz, and two anonymous referees for their useful comments. We thank the participants at the 2016 U.I. Sophia Workshop in Economics and Management; The 2016 Annual Conference of the Italian Society of Law and Economics; The 2017 “Pierluigi Porta” Memorial Workshop; The Behavioral and Experimental Economics Workshop at LUISS University for comments. Financial support from the University of Cologne (DFG Research Unit FOR 1371: Incentives in Firms: Compensation, Ethics, and Behavior), LUMSA University, and the University of Cagliari is gratefully acknowledged.

Disclaimer

The usual disclaimers apply. Experimental data are publicly available at the Open Science Framework (OSF) Repository, Project osf.io/vzky2/.

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Matteo Rizzolli.

Ethics declarations

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the Ethical standards of the Institutional Research Committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Additional information

Publisher's Note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Electronic supplementary material

Below is the link to the electronic supplementary material.

Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 38 kb)

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Bruni, L., Pelligra, V., Reggiani, T. et al. The Pied Piper: Prizes, Incentives, and Motivation Crowding-in. J Bus Ethics 166, 643–658 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-019-04154-3

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-019-04154-3

Keywords

  • Incentives
  • Prizes
  • Awards
  • Crowding-in
  • Meaning
  • Intrinsic motivation

JEL Classification

  • B1
  • D03
  • J33