|dc.description.abstract||Social norms have many similarities with Adam Smith`s moral rules of conduct. Basing
hypotheses regarding social norms on Smith`s theories on moral behavior, this thesis aims to
study whether social norms help explain social behavior.
To study social norms, the norm elicitation method of Erin Krupka and Roberto Weber (2013)
is applied, both with a within- and between-subject design. The hypothetical situations
concern distributional choices, of which “Person A” is granted full allocations rights of a pool
of money owned together with another randomly selected “Person B”. Incentivized to match
the modal answer, participants are to evaluate each actions available to “Person A” on a fourpoint
scale. The elicited norms are also used to make predictions of actual behavior. Behavior
is studied separately, in a dictator experiment.
The experiment gives evidence of an asymmetry in the norm-profile: people judge an
allocation that is preferable to the recipient as socially appropriate, while they tend to judge an
action that is preferable to the decision maker as inappropriate. Thus, the norm profiles tells
us that people care about more than purely the distribution.
The main social norm is to split the money equally, and more than half of the participants
comply. However, although people agree more about what is considered socially
inappropriate than about what is considered socially appropriate, the action-guiding power of
such norms are very small: almost half of the participants violates the social norm by
allocating more than half to themselves. Such results suggests that modeling behavior as a
tradeoff between compliance to a social norm and monetary payoffs would be able to give
The data was analyzed with the statistical software Stata/IC 14.1 and Microsoft Excel 2016.||eng