Are some countries more honest than others? : evidence from a tax compliance experiment in Sweden and Italy
ANDRIGHETTO, Giulia; ZHANG, Nan; OTTONE, Stefania; PONZANO, Ferruccio; D’ATTOMA, John; STEINMO, Sven
Title: Are some countries more honest than others? : evidence from a tax compliance experiment in Sweden and Italy
Author: ANDRIGHETTO, Giulia; ZHANG, Nan; OTTONE, Stefania; PONZANO, Ferruccio; D’ATTOMA, John; STEINMO, Sven
Citation: Frontiers in psychology, 2016, Vol. 7, Article 472, OnlineOnly
This study examines cultural differences in ordinary dishonesty between Italy and Sweden, two countries with different reputations for trustworthiness and probity. Exploiting a set of cross-cultural tax compliance experiments, we find that the average level of tax evasion (as a measure of ordinary dishonesty) does not differ significantly between Swedes and Italians. However, we also uncover differences in national "styles" of dishonesty. Specifically, while Swedes are more likely to be either completely honest or completely dishonest in their fiscal declarations, Italians are more prone to fudging (i.e., cheating by a small amount). We discuss the implications of these findings for the evolution and enforcement of honesty norms.
Subject: Cross-country comparison; Fudging; Ordinary dishonest behavior; Social norms; Tax compliance
Published online: 07 April 2016
Grant number: FP7/295675/EU
Type of Access: openAccess
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