nep-cbe New Economics Papers
on Cognitive and Behavioural Economics
Issue of 2005‒10‒29
eight papers chosen by
Marco Novarese
Universita del Piemonte Orientale

  1. The Role of Equality and Efficiency in Social Preferences By Ernst Fehr; Michael Naef; Klaus M. Schmidt
  2. An interview with Thomas C. Schelling: Interpretation of game theory and the checkerboard model By N. Emrah Aydinonat
  3. Entrepreneurship, Evolution and the Human Mind By Brian Loasby
  4. Herding with and without Payoff Externalities - An Internet Experiment By Mathias Drehmann; Jörg Oechssler; Andreas Roider
  5. Rage Against the Machines: How Subjects Learn to Play Against Computers By Peter Duersch; Albert Kolb; Joerg Oechssler; Burkhard Schipper
  6. The role of personal involvement and responsibility in dictatorial allocations: a classroom investigation By Pablo Brañas-Garza; Miguel Angel Durán; María Paz Espinosa
  7. Workgroup Gender Diversity and Charismatic Leadership: Asymmetric Effects Among Men and Women By JUAN CARLOS PASTOR; MARGARITA MAYO
  8. The Relevance of Procedural Utility for Economics By Matthias Benz

  1. By: Ernst Fehr (Institute for Empirical Research in Economics, University of Zurich, Bluemlisalpstrasse 10, CH-8006 Zurich, Switzerland); Michael Naef (Institute for Empirical Research in Economics, University of Zurich, Bluemlisalpstrasse 10, CH-8006 Zurich, Switzerland); Klaus M. Schmidt (Department of Economics, University of Munich, Ludwigstr. 28, D-80539 Muenchen, Germany)
    Abstract: Engelmann and Strobel (AER 2004) claim that a combination of efficiency seeking and minmax preferences dominates inequity aversion in simple dictator games. This result relies on a strong subject pool effect. The participants of their experiments were undergraduate students of economics and business administration who self-selected into their field of study and learned early on that efficiency is desirable. We show that for non-economists the preference for efficiency is much less pronounced. We also find a gender effect indicating that women are more egalitarian than men. However, perhaps surprisingly, the dominance of equality over efficiency is unrelated to political attitudes.
    Keywords: Social Preferences, Inequity Aversion, Efficiency Preferences
    JEL: C7 C91 C92 D63 D64
    Date: 2004–10
  2. By: N. Emrah Aydinonat (Ankara University)
    Abstract: This note is mainly based on a short interview with Thomas C. Schelling (TCS), who shared the Nobel Prize with Robert J. Aumann in 2005. The interview took place on 06.03.2001 at University of Maryland, College Park, USA. It consists of two parts. The first part is about his interpretation of game theory, particularly about the use of game- theoretic models in explaining the origin and maintenance of conventions, and norms. The second part is on the origin of Schelling’s influential checkerboard model of residential segregation, particularly about his approach to modeling social phenomena exemplified by this model. The note ends with some concluding remarks. Citation: Aydinonat, N. Emrah, (2005) 'An interview with Thomas C. Schelling: Interpretation of game theory and the checkerboard model,' Economics Bulletin, Vol. 2 no. 2 pp. 1-7.
    Keywords: Thomas Schelling, game theory, checkerboard model
    JEL: B
    Date: 2005–10–22
  3. By: Brian Loasby
    Date: 2005–09
  4. By: Mathias Drehmann (Bank of England); Jörg Oechssler (Department of Economics, University of Bonn, Germany); Andreas Roider (Department of Economics, University of Bonn, Germany)
    Abstract: Most real world situations that are susceptible to herding are also characterized by direct payoff externalities. Yet, the bulk of the theoretical and experimental literature on herding has focused on pure informational externalities. In this paper we experimentally investigate the effects of several different forms of payoff externalities (e.g., network effects, .first-mover advantage, etc.) in a standard information-based herding model. Our results are based on an internet experiment with more than 6000 subjects, including a subsample of 267 consultants from an international consulting firm. We also replicate and review earlier cascade experiments. Finally, we study reputation effects (i.e., the influence of success models) in the context of herding.
    Keywords: information cascades, herding, network effects, experiment, internet
    JEL: C92 D8
    Date: 2004–11
  5. By: Peter Duersch (Department of Economics, University of Heidelberg); Albert Kolb (Department of Economics, University of Bonn); Joerg Oechssler (Department of Economics, University of Heidelberg); Burkhard Schipper (Department of Economics, University of California)
    Abstract: We use an experiment to explore how subjects learn to play against computers which are programmed to follow one of a number of standard learning algorithms. The learning theories are (unbeknown to subjects) a best response process, fictitious play, imitation, reinforcement learning, and a trial & error process. We test whether subjects try to influence those algorithms to their advantage in a forward-looking way (strategic teaching). We find that strategic teaching occurs frequently and that all learning algorithms are subject to exploitation with the notable exception of imitation. The experiment was conducted, both, on the internet and in the usual laboratory setting. We find some systematic differences, which however can be traced to the different incentives structures rather than the experimental environment.
    Keywords: learning; fictitious play; imitation; reinforcement; trial & error; strategic teaching; Cournot duopoly; experiments; internet.
    JEL: C72 C91 C92 D43 L13
    Date: 2005–10–25
  6. By: Pablo Brañas-Garza (Department of Economic Theory and Economic History, University of Granada); Miguel Angel Durán (Department of Economic Theory and Economic History, University of Granada); María Paz Espinosa (Universidad del País Vasco)
    Abstract: This paper explores new motivations behind giving. Specifically, it focuses on personal involvement and responsibility to explain why decision makers give positive amounts in dictatorial decisons. The experiment is designed to uncover these motivations. Subjects face the problem of a dictator's allocation of an indivisible pie P to one of two players; indivisibility creates an extremely unequal outcome and the dictator is given a chance to correct this outcome at a cost. The willingness to pay to correct the outcome is examined under different scenarios so that we learn about several features concerning preferences.
    Keywords: Fairness, Dictator game, Moral cost.
    JEL: C91 D63 D64
    Date: 2005–10–17
  7. By: JUAN CARLOS PASTOR (Instituto de Empresa); MARGARITA MAYO (Instituto de Empresa)
    Abstract: A laboratory study was conducted to examine how gender team diversity influences men and women´s charismatic relationships with an elected group leader. We examined individuals´ charismatic relationships with their leaders when working in groups varying in gender composition. Results supported the argument that gender diversity provides a context that facilitates the emergence of charismatic leadership. Furthermore, the effect of gender diversity on charismatic relationships is asymmetric, being more marked in the case of men than that of women. Our results question the similarity-attraction hypothesis and contribute to the incipient follower-centric approach to leadership.
    Keywords: Diversity, Leadership
    Date: 2005–10
  8. By: Matthias Benz
    Abstract: This paper aims at showing the relevance of procedural utility for economics: people do not only care about outcomes, as usually assumed in economics, they also value the processes and conditions leading to outcomes. The psychological foundations of procedural utility are outlined and it is discussed how the concept differs from other related approaches in economics, like outcome utility, outcome fairness or intentions. Institutions at the level of society and fair procedures are shown to be sources of procedural utility, and novel empirical evidence on the role of procedural utility in important areas of the economy, polity and society is presented.
    Keywords: procedural utility, outcome utility, institutions, procedural fairness, outcome fairness, intentions
    JEL: C78
    Date: 2005–10

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