ISSN 0439-755X
CN 11-1911/B

Acta Psychologica Sinica ›› 2013, Vol. 45 ›› Issue (3): 353-362.

### Risk Preferences in Monetary Auction Tasks: The Roles of Self-esteem Levels and Genders

ZHONG Yilu;LIU Yongfang

1. (School of Psychology and Cognitive Science, East China Normal University, Shanghai 200062, China)
• Received:2012-05-29 Published:2013-03-20 Online:2013-03-20
• Contact: LIU Yongfang

Abstract: Many studies have examined how high or low self-esteem affects risk preference, but almost none have considered the impact of moderate self-esteem on risk preference. In addition, these studies made few allowances for the effects of the participants’ genders and the competitors’ genders. In this study, two experiments are presented to examine the effects of self-esteem levels, the participants’ genders and the competitors’ genders on risk preference in monetary auction. Experiment 1 explores the effects of an individual’s self-esteem level and genders on risk preference in monetary auction by a “people to people” behavioral experiment. Experiment 2 introduces the genders of the auction opponents as a variable to examine further its effects on risk preference in monetary auction by a “people to machine” behavioral experiment. The results of the two experiments showed that (1) The levels of self-esteem tend to have a significant effect on the risk preference in monetary auctions: participants with moderate self-esteem have the highest risk preference; (2) The main effect of the bidders’ gender and its interaction with levels of self-esteem was not significant;(3) The main effect of the auction opponents’ gender was not significant, but its interaction with levels of self-esteem and the bidders’ gender was significant. These results do not concur with the general findings about the effects of self-esteem levels, the participants’ genders and the competitors’ genders on risk preference on competitive tasks. The complicated relationships among self-esteem levels, the participants’ genders and the competitors’ genders as well as the theoretical and practical implications are discussed based on the relevant findings.