nep-evo New Economics Papers
on Evolutionary Economics
Issue of 2016‒05‒21
five papers chosen by
Matthew Baker
City University of New York

  1. Recent developments in the experimental elicitation of time preference By Stephen L. Cheung
  2. Identification of Biased Beliefs in Games of Incomplete Information Using Experimental Data By Victor Aguirregabiria; Erhao Xie
  3. A Note on The Evolution of Preferences By Oliver Enrique Pardo Reinoso
  4. Evolutionary Justification of Plagiarism By Karpov, Alexander
  5. Boosting cooperation between agents in diverse groups: a dynamical model of prosocial behavior, free-riding and coercive solutions. By Solferino, Nazaria; Taurino, SerenaFiona; Tessitore, M.Elisabetta

  1. By: Stephen L. Cheung
    Abstract: This methodological survey reviews recent developments in the design of experiments to elicit individuals' time preferences, with a focus on the measurement or control for potentially non-linear utility. While the objective of a time preference experiment is usually to estimate parameters of a discount function, assumptions concerning the nature of utility may have an important influence upon these estimates. The survey classifies experiment designs on two dimensions: whether they assume an equivalence between utility under risk and over time, and whether they result in an estimate of the curvature of utility.
    Keywords: time preference, discounted utility, instantaneous utility, choice list
    JEL: C91 D03 D90
    Date: 2015–11–25
  2. By: Victor Aguirregabiria; Erhao Xie
    Abstract: This paper studies the identification of players' preferences and beliefs in empirical applications of discrete choice games using experimental data. The experiment comprises a set of games with similar features (e.g., two-player coordination games) where each game has different values for the players' monetary payoffs. Each game can be interpreted as an experimental treatment group. The researcher assigns randomly subjects to play these games and observes the outcome of the game as described by the vector of players' actions. Data from this experiment can be described in terms of the empirical distribution of players' actions conditional on the treatment group. The researcher is interested in the nonparametric identification of players' preferences (utility function of money) and players' beliefs about the expected behavior of other players, without imposing restrictions such as unbiased or rational beliefs or a particular functional form for the utility of money. We show that the hypothesis of unbiased/rational beliefs is testable and propose a test of this null hypothesis. We apply our method to two sets of experiments conducted by Goeree and Holt (2001) and Heinemann, Nagel and Ockenfels (2009). Our empirical results suggest that in the matching pennies game, a player is able to correctly predict other player's behavior. In the public good coordination game, our test can reject the null hypothesis of unbiased beliefs when the payoff of the non-cooperative action is relatively low.
    Keywords: Testing biased beliefs; Multiple equilibria; Strategic uncertainty; Coordination game
    JEL: C57 C72
    Date: 2016–05–12
  3. By: Oliver Enrique Pardo Reinoso
    Abstract: This note checks the robustness of a surprising result in Dekel et al. (2007). The result states that strict Nash equilibria might cease to be evolutionary stable when agents are able to observe the opponent’s preferences with a very low probability. This note shows that the result is driven by the assumption that there is no risk for the observed preferences to be mistaken. In particular, when a player may observe a signal correlated with the opponent’s preferences, but the signal is noisy enough, all strict Nash equilibria are evolutionary stable.
    Date: 2015–09–01
  4. By: Karpov, Alexander
    Abstract: This paper provides evolutionary game theoretic model of plagiarism. The paper finds the relationship between author effort, publication value, and the frequency of plagiarism. There are two types of equilibria. Plagiarist-free equilibria are neutrally stable. The only evolutionary stable state is characterized by a positive share of plagiarists.
    Keywords: plagiarism, replication dynamics
    JEL: C73 I23
    Date: 2016–04
  5. By: Solferino, Nazaria; Taurino, SerenaFiona; Tessitore, M.Elisabetta
    Abstract: Cooperation is usually stronger towards in-group members, because giving an upright signal about themselves implies higher possibilities of reciprocity among members with the same social identity. We examine the case where collaboration between two groups is a mandatory condition to achieve success in a particular project, but in the first one, the social identity is quite strong. We show that the existence of a small share of prosocial players in the first group can create a sort of "imitation effect" so that each new member puts more effort in cooperating with the outsiders. On the other side, to avoid free-riding effort should be conditional to the other's commitment. This way to boost cooperation is usually more efficient than a coercive strategy in the presence of significant sized majorities or feelings of resentments. Our analysis suggests that it is appropriate, under some circumstances, to stimulate a multicultural paradigm devoted to value and manage diversity through an acculturation process emphasizing adaptation, interdependence, and mutual appreciation of different cultures.
    Keywords: Cooperation, Dynamical Analysis, Groups, Identity.
    JEL: C61 C71 D71
    Date: 2016–05–13

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