Sabotage on ice : A natural experiment in short track speed skating Thesis

short description

  • Undergraduate thesis

Thesis author

  • Algarra Saavedra, Paula Alejandra


  • Organizations often adopt systems based on tournament structures that, given their emphasis on relative performance, create incentives for sabotage. This study exploits a change in the regulation in short track speed skating as a natural experiment. The new regulation forbids the execution of specific movements in the race, affecting differentially the skaters according to their skills, and thus providing differential incentives for sabotage. Using data from the men's 500 m race involving 14 different tournaments from the international skating union (ISU), it was found that the change of rules encouraged the least experienced skaters (a proxy for skaters skills) to do more sabotage, but only in the most advanced rounds of the competition. In addition, inexperienced skaters starting in a further back position in the race are less likely to sabotage others.

publication date

  • October 22, 2019 7:53 PM


  • Asymmetry
  • Competitive behavior
  • Performance
  • Sports
  • Tournament

Document Id

  • 455f94d3-7bd0-4cbc-b948-90b2e0e23e88