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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Oldenbourg March 16, 2016

Group Decision Making in a Corruption Experiment: China and Germany Compared

Björn Frank, Sha Li, Christoph Bühren and Haiying Qin


Much hope is put into the ‘‘four eyes principle’’ as an anti corruption device in many countries. However, as recent cases have shown, entire groups of decision makers can be corrupt as well. This paper reports on an experimental investigation of individual versus group decision making in a corruption experiment.

We find that the group decisions, as compared to individual decisions, lead to a higher level of corruption, for bribers and for bribees, and in China as well as in Germany. Only German women are less corrupt in a group decision context than when deciding individually.

Further differences between Germany and China with respect to the effect of the teams’ gender composition were found. In Germany, groups that consist only of females are the most honest and the male groups are the most corrupt, whereas in China the groups with mixed gender combination have shown a higher inclination to make corrupt decisions than the groups that are homogenous with respect to gender.

Code and Datasets

The author(s) published code and data associated with this article in the ZBW Journal Data Archive, a storage platform for datasets. See:

Online erschienen: 2016-3-16
Erschienen im Druck: 2015-4-1

© 2015 by Lucius & Lucius, Stuttgart

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