Main Article Content


Purpose This study investigates antisocial behaviour where participants made payoff destruction decisions (“money burning”) that are conditional on the co-participant being a human or a computer.

Methods This study uses the joy-of-destruction minigame experiment with Indonesian citizens living in Australia as the participants. Regression methods are used to observe whether discrimination occurs and to identify factors associated with antisocial behaviour.

Findings This study finds money burning against the computer to be more prevalent than against humans. There was very limited support that such behaviour was correlated with demographic characteristics or subjective norms, suggesting that the presence of a computer co-participant drives the result.

Implications The results have a methodological implication for experimental economics where experimenters should anticipate that computer players may have an unforeseen impact on human behaviour. Policy-wise, the study shows a relatively cohesive community which may be driven by the multicultural policy of Australia.

Originality This is the first antisocial behaviour economics experiment that includes a computer as a potential co-participant.


Antisocial behaviour Other-regarding preferences Lab-in-the-field experiment Human-computer interaction

Article Details

Author Biography

Muhammad Ryan Sanjaya, Department of Economics, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

Department of Economics

How to Cite
Sanjaya, M. R. (2022). Rage against the machine: A money-burning field experiment. Economic Journal of Emerging Markets, 14(1), 138–150.


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