Analytical Thinking, Prosocial Voting, and Intergroup Competition: Experimental Evidence from China
47 Pages Posted: 27 Dec 2018
Date Written: November 27, 2018
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
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