Sebastian Fehrler is assistant professor of economics at the University of Konstanz (and is also affiliated to the University of Zurich).

His research interests lie in the fields of public, organizational, and behavioral economics. He applies game theory and experiments to address his research questions.

He joined IZA as a Research Affiliate in September 2009 and became a Research Fellow in July 2015.



IZA Discussion Paper No. 10258

We examine the incentives to self-select into politics and how they depend on the transparency of the entry process. To this end, we set up a two-stage political competition model and test its key mechanisms in the lab. At the entry stage, potential candidates compete in a contest to become...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 9998
published in: Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 2016, 129, 157-171

People benefit from being perceived as trustworthy. Examples include sellers trying to attract buyers, or candidates in elections trying to attract voters. In a laboratory experiment using exchange games, in which the trustor can choose the trustee, we study whether trustees can signal their trustworthiness by giving to charity. Our...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 9027
published in: American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, 2018, 10, 181-209

We investigate the potential of transparency to influence committee decision-making. We present a model in which career concerned committee members receive private information of different type-dependent accuracy, deliberate and vote. We study three levels of transparency under which career concerns are predicted to affect behavior differently, and test the model's...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 7411
published in: Economics Letters, 2013, 121, 400-404

NGOs and other non-profit organizations attract workers who strongly identify themselves with their missions. We study whether these "good guys" are more trustworthy and how such pronounced group identities affect trust and trustworthiness within the groups and toward out-groups. We find that subjects who strongly identify themselves with a non-profit...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 7148
published in: Evolution and Human Behavior, 2013, 34, 139-145

It has been shown that psychological predispositions to benefit others can motivate human cooperation and the evolution of such social preferences can be explained with kin or multi-level selection models. It has also been shown that cooperation can evolve as a costly signal of an unobservable quality that makes a...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 6460
published in: Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 2014, 100, 99-110

Do employees work harder if their job has the right mission? In a laboratory labor market experiment, we test whether subjects provide higher effort if they can choose the mission of their job. We observe that subjects do not provide higher effort than in a control treatment. Surprised by this...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5299
preliminary study that led to IZA DP No. 7148

Being perceived as trustworthy comes with substantial economic benefits in many situations. Making other people think you are a trustworthy person may, therefore, be an important motive for charity and other forms of prosocial behavior, provided these activities work as signals of trustworthiness. This paper shows that donating money to...