Analytical Thinking, Prosocial Voting, and Intergroup Competition: Experimental Evidence from China

47 Pages Posted: 27 Dec 2018

See all articles by Rebecca Morton

Rebecca Morton

New York University (NYU) - Wilf Family Department of Politics

Kai Ou

Florida State University

Xiangdong Qin

Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) - Antai College of Economics and Management

Date Written: November 27, 2018

Abstract

We investigate whether and how analytical thinking affects Muslims' prosocial voting towards ingroup (fellow Muslims) and outgroup members (Han Chinese). We conduct an incentivized laboratory-style voting experiment in western China, where tension and competition exist between the two ethnic groups. We find a significant negative effect of analytical thinking on prosocial voting, which is related to group identity: a strong and significant negative effect on behavior towards outgroup members, but a small and generally insignificant effect towards ingroup members. Our results suggest that the former is mainly driven by fast thinking or norm-based, unconscious behavior, whereas the latter survives slow thinking, analytical thought. Our results are consistent with group competition affecting the benefits and costs of prosocial voting, and these costs and benefits become more salient when engaging in analytical thinking.

Keywords: Analytical Thinking, Chinese Muslim, Intergroup Competition, Ethnic Identity, Lab-In-The-Field Experiment

JEL Classification: C9, D6, D7, H0

Suggested Citation

Morton, Rebecca and Ou, Kai and Qin, Xiangdong, Analytical Thinking, Prosocial Voting, and Intergroup Competition: Experimental Evidence from China (November 27, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3298060 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3298060

Rebecca Morton

New York University (NYU) - Wilf Family Department of Politics ( email )

715 Broadway
New York, NY 10003
United States
212-998-3706 (Phone)

Kai Ou (Contact Author)

Florida State University ( email )

Tallahasse, FL 32306
United States

Xiangdong Qin

Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) - Antai College of Economics and Management ( email )

No.535 Fahuazhen Road
Shanghai Jiao Tong University
Shanghai, Shanghai 200052
China

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