Unfairness, Anger, and Spite: Emotional Rejections of Ultimatum Offers

Pillutla, M and Murnighan, J K (1996) Unfairness, Anger, and Spite: Emotional Rejections of Ultimatum Offers. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 68 (3). pp. 208-224. ISSN 0749-5978

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This paper addresses an anomaly in experimental economics, the rejection of ultimatum offers, and uses a psychological explanation for this essentially economic event. The wounded pride/spite model predicts that informed, knowledgeable respondents may react to small ultimatum offers by perceiving them as unfair, feeling anger, and acting spitefully. Results of a large scale experiment support the model, showing that rejections were most frequent when respondents could evaluate the fairness of their offers and attribute responsibility to offerers. In addition, anger was a better explanation of the rejections than perceptions that the offers were unfair. The discussion addresses the rarely studied but frequently observed emotions that negotiations provoke.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: The research article was published by the author with the affiliation of London Business School
Subjects: Organizational Behaviour
Date Deposited: 26 Sep 2021 17:32
Last Modified: 26 Sep 2021 17:32
URI: https://eprints.exchange.isb.edu/id/eprint/1581

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