You Get What You Vote?
Reciprocity is proposed to be an important motivation for behaviour. This paper adds to previous literature by analysing whether intergroup reciprocal relationships are not limited to the same period. Data on voting behaviour in the Eurovision Song Contest is used to analyse reciprocity in a large natural dynamic group setting. It is a great yearly music contest in which countries vote for each other’s performances and it is also a pop culture example of where reciprocity is expected to influence behaviour. Panel data on voting in the Eurovision Song Contest is analysed with a model including country, recipient, and time fixed effects. Furthermore, the model controls for geographical, cultural, and musical performance influences of voting behaviour in the contest. The estimated coefficient is 0.082 points in a linear regression of the independent variable excess points received last year on the dependent variable excess points. This effect is statistically significant at a 1% significance level, which means that countries remember how many points they received from who in the previous year and reciprocate by giving excess points in the present year. A country gives 0.082 points in excess for every point they received in excess from that other country last year. So, in an intergroup context, the reward from reciprocity is about one-tenth of the initial generous behaviour. However, significant effects of the many controls show that reciprocity is a complicated concept and it can be interlinked with many other influences of behaviour such as geography and culture.