Do experimental subjects favor their friends?
Brañas Garza, Pablo
Durán, Miguel A.
Espinosa Alejos, María Paz
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Ideally we would like subjects of experiments to be perfect strangers so that the situation they face at the lab is not just part of a long run interaction. Unfortunately, it is not easy to reach those conditions and experimenters try to mitigate any effects from those out-of-the-lab relationships by, for instance, randomly matching subjects. However, even if this type of procedure is used, there is a positive probability that a subject may face a friend or an acquaintance. We find evidence that social proximity between subjects is irrelevant to experiment results in dictator games. Thus, although ideal conditions are not met, relations between subjects do not contaminate the results of experiments.