How much do different monetary and non-monetary motivators induce costly effort? Does the effectiveness line up with the expectations of researchers?
We present the results of a large-scale real-effort experiment with 18 treatment arms.
We compare the effect of three motivators:
In addition, we elicit forecasts by behavioural experts regarding the effectiveness of the treatments, allowing us to compare results to expectations.
We then compare the results to forecasts by 208 experts. On average, the experts anticipate several key features, like the effectiveness of psychological motivators. A sizeable share of experts, however, expects crowd-out, probability weighting, and pure altruism, counterfactually.
This heterogeneity does not reflect field of training, as behavioural economists, standard economists, and psychologists make similar forecasts. Using a simple model, we back out key parameters for social preferences, time preferences, and reference dependence, comparing expert beliefs and experimental results.