Surprisingly little research has investigated the particular motives that underlie choice behavior in social dilemma situations. The main aim of the present research was to ask whether behavior in take-some games (such as the multiple-person Commons Dilemma Game and the two-person Bandit Game) and give-some games (such as the multiple-person Public Goods Dilemma Game and the two-person Dictator Game) is differently affected by proself and prosocial motives. Two experimental studies were conducted. Our first experiment used a trait-based assessment of the motives, whereas in our second experiment the motives were measured as state variables. The results of both experiments revealed that proself and prosocial motives did not explain much difference between taking and giving when comparing the Commons Dilemma Game and the Public Goods Dilemma Game. Yet, our second experiment revealed that these motives did differentiate choices in the Bandit Game and the Dictator Game. More specifically, prosocial motives are more strongly related to giving behavior in the Dictator Game than to taking behavior in the Bandit Game. As such, it can be concluded that in dyadic games (but not in multiple-person games) prosocial motives (but not proself motives) predict choice behavior in a game-specific way.

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Judgment and Decision Making
Erasmus University Rotterdam

Haesevoets, T., van Hiel, A., Van Assche, J. (Jasper), Bostyn, D., & Folmer, C.R. (Chris Reinders). (2019). An exploration of the motivational basis of take-some and give-some games. Judgment and Decision Making, 14(5), 535–546. Retrieved from