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Journal Article

The Dirt on Coming Clean: Perverse Effects of Disclosing Conflicts of Interest

Daylian M. Cain, George Loewenstein and Don A. Moore
The Journal of Legal Studies
Vol. 34, No. 1 (January 2005), pp. 1-25
DOI: 10.1086/426699
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1086/426699
Page Count: 25
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
The Dirt on Coming Clean: Perverse Effects of Disclosing Conflicts of Interest
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Abstract

Abstract Conflicts of interest can lead experts to give biased and corrupt advice. Although disclosure is often proposed as a potential solution to these problems, we show that it can have perverse effects. First, people generally do not discount advice from biased advisors as much as they should, even when advisors’ conflicts of interest are disclosed. Second, disclosure can increase the bias in advice because it leads advisors to feel morally licensed and strategically encouraged to exaggerate their advice even further. As a result, disclosure may fail to solve the problems created by conflicts of interest and may sometimes even make matters worse.

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