The effect of money magnitude on unfair proposals and decisions in ultimatum and dictator games

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Nan Ye
Qiangqiang Wang
Zhiwei Wang
Cite this article:  Ye, N., Wang, Q., & Wang, Z. (2022). The effect of money magnitude on unfair proposals and decisions in ultimatum and dictator games. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 50(6), e11408.


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To explore the effect of money magnitude in unfair decisions, participants accepted or rejected the allocation scheme proposed by the other participant/player in ultimatum games, or chose an allocation scheme to share a certain amount of money with the other participant/player in dictator games. The results show that in ultimatum games, as the amount of money increased, when the level of unfairness remained constant for unfair decisions, participants (responders) were increasingly likely to reject the unfair allocation scheme; however, in dictator games, as the amount of money increased, participants (proposers) allocated an increasing proportion of money to themselves. Thus, there is an effect of money magnitude in unfair decision processing. Participants’ economic decisions were not entirely based on a social fairness preference, and the amount of money involved had an important influence on their decisions about making or accepting unfair proposals.

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