Date of Original Version




Rights Management

This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication.

Abstract or Description

Evidence from two experiments indicates that task-related communication promotes cooperation in mixed-motive situations by activating interpersonal norms related to fairness and trust. In Experiment 1, task-related communication increased cooperation between individuals in a three-choice prisoner’s dilemma game (PDG-Alt) but task-unrelated communication did not. In Experiment 2, cooperation was increased both by sending a task-related message to one’s counterpart and receiving a cooperative task-related message from one’s counterpart. Mediation analyses revealed that task-related communication increased cooperation by activating fairness and trust norms (Experiments 1 and 2). Specifically, whereas sending (relative to receiving) a task-related message increased cooperation by activating fairness norms, receiving (relative to sending) a task-related message increased cooperation by activating trust norms (Experiment 2).



Included in

Business Commons



Published In

Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 46, 1, 39-50.