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Honesty versus Co-operation

Laszlo Zsolnai’s paper “Honesty versus Cooperation: A Reinterpretation of the Moral Behavior of Economics Students” was published in The American Journal of Economics and Sociology (Vol. 62, No. 4 (Oct., 2003), pp. 707-712).

A variety of empirical evidence suggests that economics students are less cooperative than are students in other disciplines. Anthony M. Yezer and his colleagues have recently provided a strong counter-example claiming that economics students behave in a more honest manner than do noneconomics students. Since honesty and cooperation are not the same quality, there might be no contradiction between these two claims. Economics students seem to represent a special pattern of moral behavior that is characterized by respect for property rights and strong self-interest motivation simultaneously.