Favouritism, fairness and joint profit in long-term relationships



This study was designed to test a number of hypotheses about the use of FAV and other strategies as measured by the intergroup ‘matrices’ in four long-term relationships-with spouse, child, friend and workmate. Forty subjects filled in matrices giving three measures of self-favouritism (FAV), and one each of fairness (F) and maximum joint profit (MJP), in relation to the allocation of money and time. It was found that FAV was not used for spouse, and was used less for child than for the non-family relationships (p < 0.01, p < 0.05). There was also an influence of altruism (A) against FAV, when time was distributed between spouse (p < 0.01) or child (p < 0.001) and the self. F was used most for spouse, followed by child, friend and workmate (p < 0.001), and was used more by females in distributing money (p < 0.01). MJP was not used at all for money, but was used to some extent for time.