Sabotaging Another: Priming Competition Increases Cheating Behavior in Tournaments

Mary L. Rigdon, Alexander D'Esterre

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Trophy. Goal. Dominated. Does priming individuals with competitive concepts such as these influence the temptation to cheat? We utilize a standard laboratory cheating task in a tournament setting and test whether nonconscious priming impacts the nature of cheating behavior. The results demonstrate an asymmetry in a winner-take-all setting: a competitive prime does not increase cheating to improve one's own outcome, but does significantly increase the willingness of an individual to sabotage a competitor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)456-473
Number of pages18
JournalSouthern Economic Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Oct 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • C91
  • D03

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics


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