nep-spo New Economics Papers
on Sports and Economics
Issue of 2022‒06‒20
one paper chosen by
Humberto Barreto
DePauw University

  1. The Effect of Losing and Winning on Cheating and Effort in Repeated Competitions By Sarah Necker; Fabian Paetzel

  1. By: Sarah Necker; Fabian Paetzel
    Abstract: Competitive rewards are often assigned on a regular basis, e.g., in annual salary negotiations or employee-of-the-month schemes. The repetition of competitions can imply that opponents are matched based on earlier outcomes. Using a real-effort experiment, we examine how cheating and effort evolve in two rounds of competitions in which subjects compete with different types of opponents in the second round (random/based on first-round outcome). We find that (i) losing causes competitors to increase cheating in the second round while winning implies a tendency to reduce cheating. A similar effect is found with regard to effort, which losers increase to a larger extent than winners. (ii) Competitor matching does not significantly affect behavior.
    Keywords: cheating, effort, competition, competitor, social recognition, laboratory experiment
    JEL: C91 C92 M52 J28 J33
    Date: 2022

This nep-spo issue is ©2022 by Humberto Barreto. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.