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Discussion Paper

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This paper studies career concerns in teams where the support a worker receives depends on fellow team members’ effort and ability. In this setting, by exerting effort and providing support, a worker can influence her own and her teammates’ performances in order to bias the learning process in her favor. To manipulate the market’s assessments, we argue that in equilibrium, a worker has incentives to help or even sabotage her colleagues in order to signal that she is of higher ability. In a multiperiod stationary framework, we show that the stationary level of work effort is above and help effort is below their efficient levels.

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