Selfish and Indoctrinated Economists?

Frey, Bruno ; Meier, Stephan

In: European Journal of Law and Economics, 2005, vol. 19, no. 2, p. 165-171

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    Many people believe that economists in general are more selfish than other people and that this greater selfishness is due to economics education. This paper offers empirical evidence against this widely held belief. Using a unique data set on giving behaviour in connection with two social funds at the University of Zurich, it is shown that economics education does not make people act more selfishly. Rather, this natural experiment suggests that the particular behaviour of economists can be explained by a selection effect