Experimentally kill a mouse in/for/because of the market

Economists rarely perform experiments with mice. But it does happen, as in this study:

nora2Morals and Markets,” Armin Falk, Nora Szech [pictured here], Science, vol. 340, n. 6133, May 10, 2013, pp. 707-711. The authors, at the University of Bonn and the University of Bamberg, Germany, explain:

“In the experiment, subjects decide between either saving the life of a mouse or receiving money. We compare individual decisions to those made in a bilateral and a multilateral market. In both markets, the willingness to kill the mouse is substantially higher than in individual decisions. Furthermore, in the multilateral market, prices for life deteriorate tremendously. In contrast, for morally neutral consumption choices, differences between institutions are small.”

(Thanks to investigator Cosima Reich for bringing this to our attention.)