nep-exp New Economics Papers
on Experimental Economics
Issue of 2017‒04‒16
25 papers chosen by
Daniel Houser
George Mason University

  1. An Economic Approach to Alleviate the Crisis of Confidence in Science: With an Application to the Public Goods Game By Luigi Butera; John List
  2. On Monetary and Non-Monetary Interventions to Combat Corruption By Banerjee, Ritwik; Mitra, Arnab
  3. Collusion and Information Revelation in Auctions By Llorente-Saguer, Aniol; Zultan, Ro'i
  4. Selling Money on Ebay: A Field Study of Surplus Division By Alia Gizatulina; Olga Gorelkina
  5. The Selection and Causal Effects of Work Incentives on Labor Productivity: Evidence from a Two-Stage Randomized Controlled Trial in Malawi By Kim, Hyuncheol Bryant; Kim, Seonghoon; Kim, Thomas T.
  6. Humans' (incorrect) distrust of reflective decisions By Cabrales, Antonio; Espin, Antonio; Kujal, Praveen; Rassenti, Stephen
  7. How much priority bonus should be given to registered organ donors? An experimental analysis By Herr, Annika; Normann, Hans-Theo
  8. A Study of the Triggers of Conflict and Emotional Reactions By Caldara, Michael; McBride, Michael; McCarter, Matthew; Sheremeta, Roman
  9. What Can We Learn From Experiments? Understanding the Threats to the Scalability of Experimental Results By Omar Al-Ubaydli; John List; Dana Suskind
  10. Risk Aversion as a Perceptual Bias By Khaw, Mel Win; Li, Ziang; Woodford, Michael
  11. Inherited Institutions: Cooperation in the Light of Democratic Legitimacy By Pascal Langenbach; Franziska Tausch
  12. Network Formation and Disruption - An Experiment. Are efficient networks too complex? By Sonja Brangewitz; Behnud Mir Djawadi; Angelika Endres; Britta Hoyer
  13. Whistle-Blower Protection: Theory and Experimental Evidence By Mechtenberg, Lydia; Muehlheusser, Gerd; Roider, Andreas
  14. Gender and Peer Effects in Social Networks By Julie Beugnot; Bernard Fortin; Guy Lacroix; Marie Villeval
  15. Condorcet Jury Theorem and Cognitive Hierarchies: Theory and Experiments By Yukio Koriyama; Ali Ozkes
  16. Farmers’ quality assessment of their crops and its impact on commercialization behavior: A field experiment in Ethiopia: By Abate, Gashaw T.; Bernard, Tanguy
  17. When and why people engage in different forms of proactive behavior: interactive effects of self-construals and work characteristics By Chia-Huei Wu; Sharon Parker; Long-Zeng Wu; Cynthia Lee
  18. Can Gender Differences in Distributional Preferences Explain Gender Gaps in Competition? By Mani, Subha; Dasgupta, Utteeyo; Sharma, Smriti; Singhal, Saurabh
  19. Are Conditional Cash Transfers Fulfilling Their Promise? Schooling, Learning, and Earnings After 10 Years By Barham, Tania; Macours, Karen; Maluccio, John
  20. Impacts of an ICT-assisted Program on Attitudes and English Communicative Abilities: An experiment in a Japanese high school By HIGUCHI Yuki; SASAKI Miyuki; NAKAMURO Makiko
  21. The Valuation of Moral Rights: A Field Experiment By Stefan Bechtold; Christoph Engel
  22. Integrating young male refugees: Initial evidence from an inclusive soccer project By Lange, Martin; Pfeiffer, Friedhelm; van den Berg, Gerard J.
  23. Cooperation in polygynous households: By Barr, Abigail; Dekker, Marleen; Janssens, Wendy; Kebede, Bereket; Kramer, Berber
  24. Estimating the Relationship between Skill and Overconfidence By Feld, Jan; Sauermann, Jan; de Grip, Andries
  25. The Effect of Respondent Incentives on Panel Attrition in a Sequential Mixed-Mode Design By Gaia, Alessandra

  1. By: Luigi Butera; John List
    Abstract: Novel empirical insights by their very nature tend to be unanticipated, and in some cases at odds with the current state of knowledge on the topic. The mechanics of statistical inference suggest that such initial findings, even when robust and statistically significant within the study, should not appreciably move priors about the phenomenon under investigation. Yet, a few well-conceived independent replications dramatically improve the reliability of novel findings. Nevertheless, the incentives to replicate are seldom in place in the sciences, especially within the social sciences. We propose a simple incentive-compatible mechanism to promote replications, and use experimental economics to highlight our approach. We begin by reporting results from an experiment in which we investigate how cooperation in allocation games is affected by the presence of Knightian uncertainty (ambiguity), a pervasive and yet unexplored characteristic of most public goods. Unexpectedly, we find that adding uncertainty enhances cooperation. This surprising result serves as a test case for our mechanism: instead of sending this paper to a peer-reviewed journal, we make it available online as a working paper, but we commit never to submit it to a journal for publication. We instead offered co-authorship for a second, yet to be written, paper to other scholars willing to independently replicate our study. That second paper will reference this working paper, will include all replications, and will be submitted to a peer- reviewed journal for publication. Our mechanism allows mutually-beneficial gains from trade between the original investigators and other scholars, alleviates the publication bias problem that often surrounds novel experimental results, and accelerates the advancement of economic science by leveraging the mechanics of statistical inference.
    Date: 2017
  2. By: Banerjee, Ritwik (Indian Institute of Management); Mitra, Arnab (Portland State University)
    Abstract: The paper studies the relative effectiveness of extrinsic monetary disincentives and intrinsic non-monetary disincentives to corruption. In doing so, we also test the Beckarian prediction that at the same level of expected payoff, a low probability of detection with high penalty is a stronger deterrent to corruption than a high probability of detection with low penalty. In Experiment 1, two treatments are designed to study the effect of a low probability of detection with high penalty, and a high probability of detection with low penalty, on bribe taking behavior in a harassment bribery game. In Experiment 2, subjects participate in the same baseline harassment bribery game either without or after having gone through a four-week ethics education program. Results show that a) a low probability of detection with high penalty reduces both the amount and the likelihood of bribe demand, b) a high probability of detection with low penalty has no effect on bribe demand behavior, c) normative appeals of ethics education has a small effect on the likelihood but not on the amount of bribe demand, when measured immediately after the intervention, d) the effect of ethics education vanishes when measured four weeks after the intervention, e) extrinsic monetary intervention, particularly low probability of detection with high penalty, is more effective than normative appeal driven non-monetary intervention that aim to increase intrinsic moral cost, f) analysis of belief about acceptability of bribe demand indicates that the underlying channels through which monetary and non-monetary interventions work are very different.
    Keywords: corruption, harassment bribes, penalty, probability of audit, ethics education
    JEL: C91 C92 D03 K42
    Date: 2017–03
  3. By: Llorente-Saguer, Aniol; Zultan, Ro'i
    Abstract: The theoretical literature on collusion in auctions suggests that the first-price mechanism can deter the formation of bidding rings. However, such analyses neglect to consider the effects of failed collusion attempts, wherein information revealed in the negotiation process may affect bidding behavior. We experimentally test a setup in which theory predicts no collusion and no information revelation in first-price auctions. The results reveal a hitherto overlooked failing of the first-price mechanism: failed collusion attempts distort bidding behavior, resulting in a loss of seller revenue and efficiency. Moreover, the first-price mechanism does not result in less collusion than the second-price mechanism. We conclude that, while the features of the first-price mechanism may have the potential to deter bidder collusion, the role of beliefs in guiding bidding behavior make it highly susceptible to distortions arising from the informational properties of collusive negotiation. Auction designers should take this phenomenon into account when choosing the auction mechanism.
    Keywords: auctions; Collusion; Experiment
    JEL: C72 C91 D44
    Date: 2017–03
  4. By: Alia Gizatulina (University of St. Gallen and Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods); Olga Gorelkina (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods)
    Abstract: We study the division of trade surplus in a competitive market environment by conducting a natural field experiment on German eBay. Acting as a seller, we offer Amazon gift cards with face values of up to 500 Euro. Randomly arriving buyers, the subjects of our experiment, make price offers according to eBay rules. Using a novel decomposition method, we infer offered shares of trade surplus and find that the average share proposed to the seller amounts to 29%. Additionally, we document: (i) insignificant effects of stake size; (ii) poor use of strategically relevant public information; and (iii) behavioural differences between East and West German subjects.
    Keywords: Field experiment, ultimatum game, surplus division, bargaining, Internet trade, eBay
    JEL: C72 C93 C57
    Date: 2016–12
  5. By: Kim, Hyuncheol Bryant (Cornell University); Kim, Seonghoon (Singapore Management University); Kim, Thomas T. (Yonsei University)
    Abstract: Incentives are essential to promote labor productivity. We implemented a two-stage field experiment to measure effects of career and wage incentives on productivity through self-selection and causal effect channels. First, workers were hired with either career or wage incentives. After employment, a random half of workers with career incentives received wage incentives and a random half of workers with wage incentives received career incentives. We find that career incentives attract higher-performing workers than wage incentives but do not increase productivity for existing workers. Instead, wage incentives increase productivity for existing workers. Observable characteristics are limited in explaining the selection effect.
    Keywords: career incentive, wage incentive, internship, self-selection, labor productivity
    JEL: J30 O15 M52
    Date: 2017–03
  6. By: Cabrales, Antonio; Espin, Antonio; Kujal, Praveen; Rassenti, Stephen
    Abstract: Recent experiments suggest that social behavior may be shaped by the time available for decision making. It is known that fast decision making relies more on intuition whereas slow decision making is affected by reflective processes. Little is known, however, about whether people correctly anticipate the effect of intuition vs. reflection on others' decision making. This is important in everyday situations where anticipating others' behavior is often essential. A good example of this is the extensively studied Trust Game where the trustor, by sending an amount of money to the trustee, runs the risk of being exploited by the trusteee's subsequent action. We use this game to study how trustors' choices are affected by whether trustees are externally forced to respond quickly or slowly. We also examine whether trustors' own tendency to stop and reflect on their intuitions (as measured by the Cognitive Reflection Test) moderates how they anticipate the effect of reflection on the behavior of trustees. We find that the least reflective trustors send less money when trustees are forced to respond "reflectively" rather than "intuitively" , but we also argue that this is a wrong choice. In general, no group, including the ones with the largest number of reflective individuals, is good at anticipating the (positive) effect of forced delay on others' trustworthiness.
    Keywords: beliefs; dual-process; intuition; reflection; Trust; trustworthiness
    Date: 2017–04
  7. By: Herr, Annika; Normann, Hans-Theo
    Abstract: Recent laboratory experiments have demonstrated that prioritizing registered donors on the waiting list impressively increases the willingness to register as an organ donor. In these experiments, registered organ recipients are prioritized regardless of howlong they have been on thewaiting list. In the field, however, the willingness to register is only one factor affecting the waiting list. In this paper, we provide a comparative-statics analysis of the priority treatment by varying the number of bonus periods a registered person can skip on thewaiting list. We want to assess how much of a priority bonus registered persons should obtain in order for registration rates to improve. Our results indicate that a higher number of bonus periods significantly improves registration rates whereas a small bonus of only one period is of minor significance. A bonus of three periods ofwaiting time has the same effect as absolutely prioritizing registered recipients.
    Keywords: organ donation,laboratory experiment,priority rule,waiting list
    JEL: C90 I10 I18
    Date: 2016
  8. By: Caldara, Michael; McBride, Michael; McCarter, Matthew; Sheremeta, Roman
    Abstract: We study three triggers of conflict and explore their resultant emotional reactions in a laboratory experiment. Economists suggest that the primary trigger of conflict is monetary incentives. Social psychologists suggest that conflicts are often triggered by fear. Finally, evolutionary biologists suggest that a third trigger is uncertainty about opponent’s desire to cause harm. Consistent with the predictions from economics, social psychology, and evolutionary biology, we find that conflict originates from all three triggers. The three triggers differently impact the frequency of conflict, but not the intensity. Also, we find that the frequency and intensity of conflict decrease positive emotions and increase negative emotions, and that conflict impacts negative emotions more than positive emotions.
    Keywords: conflict, incentives, fear, uncertainty, laboratory experiment, reverse dictator game, joy of destruction game
    JEL: C72 C91 D74
    Date: 2017–03–30
  9. By: Omar Al-Ubaydli; John List; Dana Suskind
    Date: 2017
  10. By: Khaw, Mel Win; Li, Ziang; Woodford, Michael
    Abstract: The theory of expected utility maximization (EUM) explains risk aversion as due to diminishing marginal utility of wealth. However, observed choices between risky lotteries are difficult to reconcile with EUM: for example, in the laboratory, subjects' responses on individual trials involve a random element, and cannot be predicted purely from the terms offered; and subjects often appear to be too risk averse with regard to small gambles (while still accepting sufficiently favorable large gambles) to be consistent with any utility-of-wealth function. We propose a unified explanation for both anomalies, similar to the explanation given for related phenomena in the case of perceptual judgments: they result from judgments based on imprecise (and noisy) mental representation of the decision situation. In this model, risk aversion is predicted without any need for a nonlinear utility-of-wealth function, and instead results from a sort of perceptual bias --- but one that represents an optimal Bayesian decision, given the limitations of the mental representation of the situation. We propose a specific quantitative model of the mental representation of a simple lottery choice problem, based on other evidence regarding numerical cognition, and test its ability to explain the choice frequencies that we observe in a laboratory experiment.
    Keywords: Bayesian decision theory; diminishing sensitivity; prospect theory; Rabin critique; Weber's Law
    JEL: C91 D03 D81 D87
    Date: 2017–03
  11. By: Pascal Langenbach (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods); Franziska Tausch (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods)
    Abstract: We experimentally investigate whether the procedural history of a sanctioning institution affects cooperation in a social dilemma. Subjects inherit the institutional setting from a previous generation of subjects who either decided on the implementation of the institution democratically by majority vote or were exogenously assigned a setting. In order to isolate the impact of the voting procedure, no information about the cooperation history is provided. In line with existing empirical evidence, we observe that in the starting generation cooperation is higher (lower) with a democratically chosen (rejected) institution, as compared to the corresponding, randomly imposed setting. In the second generation, the procedural history only partly affects cooperation. While there is no positive democracy effect when the institution is implemented, the vote-based rejection of the institution negatively affects cooperation in the second generation. The effect size is similar to that in the first generation.
    Keywords: Endogeneity, Voting, Institutions, Social dilemma, Public good, Inherited rules
    JEL: C92 D02 D71 D72 H41
    Date: 2017–01
  12. By: Sonja Brangewitz (Paderborn University); Behnud Mir Djawadi (Paderborn University); Angelika Endres (Paderborn University); Britta Hoyer (Paderborn University)
    Abstract: We experimentally study the emergence of networks under a known external threat. To be more specific, we deal with the question if subjects in the role of a strategic Designer are able to form safe and efficient networks while facing a strategic Adversary who is going to attack their networks. This investigation relates theoretical predictions by Dziubinski and Goyal (2013) to actual observed behaviour. Varying the costs for protecting nodes, we designed and tested two treatments with different predictions for the equilibrium network. Furthermore, the in fluence of the subjects' farsightedness on their decision- making process was elicited and analysed. We find that while subjects are able to build safe networks in both treatments, equilibrium networks are only built in one of the two treatments. In the other treatment, predominantly safe networks are built but they are not efficient. Additionally, we find that farsightedness -as measured in our experiment- has no in fluence on whether subjects are able to build safe or efficient networks.
    Keywords: Networks, Experiment, Network Design, Network Defence, Network Disruption
    Date: 2017–04
  13. By: Mechtenberg, Lydia (University of Hamburg); Muehlheusser, Gerd (University of Hamburg); Roider, Andreas (University of Regensburg)
    Abstract: Whistle-blowing by employees plays a major role in uncovering corporate fraud. Various recent laws aim at improving protection of whistle-blowers and enhancing their willingness to report. Evidence on the effectiveness of such legislation is, however, scarce. Moreover, critics have raised worries about fraudulent claims by low-productivity employees. We study these issues in a theory-guided lab experiment. Easily attainable ("belief-based") protection indeed leads to more reports, both truthful and fraudulent. Fraudulent claims dilute prosecutors' incentives to investigate, and thereby hamper deterrence. These effects are ameliorated under more stringent ("fact-based") protection.
    Keywords: corporate fraud, corruption, whistle-blowing, business ethics, cheap-talk games, lab experiment
    JEL: C91 D83 D73 K42 M59
    Date: 2017–03
  14. By: Julie Beugnot (CRESE - Centre de REcherches sur les Stratégies Economiques - UFC - UFC - Université de Franche-Comté); Bernard Fortin (CIRANO - Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en analyse des organisations - UQAM - Université du Québec à Montréal , CRREP - Centre de recherche sur les risques, les enjeux économiques, et les politiques publiques - Université Laval); Guy Lacroix (CIRANO - Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en analyse des organisations - UQAM - Université du Québec à Montréal , CRREP - Centre de recherche sur les risques, les enjeux économiques, et les politiques publiques - Université Laval); Marie Villeval (GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - ENS Lyon - École normale supérieure - Lyon - UL2 - Université Lumière - Lyon 2 - UCBL - Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1 - UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Etienne] - Université de Lyon - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: We investigate whether peer effects at work differ by gender and whether the gender difference in peer effects-if any-depends on work organization, precisely the structure of social networks. We develop a social network model with gender heterogeneity that we test by means of a real-effort laboratory experiment. We compare sequential networks in which information on peers flows exclusively downward (from peers to the worker) and simultaneous networks where it disseminates bi-directionally along an undirected line (from peers to the worker and from the worker to peers). We identify strong gender differences in peer effects, as males' effort increases with peers' performance in both types of network, whereas females behave conditionally. While they are influenced by peers in sequential networks, females disregard their peers' performance when information flows in both directions. We reject that the difference between networks is driven by having one's performance observed by others or by the presence of peers in the same session in simultaneous networks. We interpret the gender difference in terms of perception of a higher competitiveness of the environment in simultaneous than in sequential networks because of the bi-directional flow of information.
    Keywords: Gender,peer effects,social networks,work effort,experiment
    Date: 2017
  15. By: Yukio Koriyama (Department of Economics, Ecole Polytechnique - Polytechnique - X - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, CREST - Centre de Recherche en Économie et Statistique - INSEE - ENSAE ParisTech - École Nationale de la Statistique et de l'Administration Économique); Ali Ozkes (GREQAM - Groupement de Recherche en Économie Quantitative d'Aix-Marseille - Université de la Méditerranée - Aix-Marseille 2 - Université Paul Cézanne - Aix-Marseille 3 - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - AMU - Aix Marseille Université - ECM - Ecole Centrale de Marseille - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: An information aggregation problem of the Condorcet Jury Theorem is considered with cognitive hierarchy models in which players would best respond holding heterogeneous beliefs on cognitive level of the other players. Whether the players are aware of the presence of opponents at their own cognitive level turns out to be a key factor for asymptotic properties of the deviation from the Nash behavior, and thence for asymptotic efficiency of the group decision. Our laboratory experiments provide evidence for the self-awareness condition. We obtain an analytical result showing that the difference from the standard cognitive hierarchy models arises when the best-reply functions are asymptotically expanding.
    Keywords: collective decision-making,bounded rationality,cognitive hierarchy,Condorcet Jury Theorem
    Date: 2017–02
  16. By: Abate, Gashaw T.; Bernard, Tanguy
    Abstract: Adoption of quality-enhancing technologies is often driven largely by farmers’ expected returns from these technologies. Without proper grades, standards, and certification systems, however, farmers may remain uncertain about the actual financial return associated with their quality-enhancing investments. This report summarizes the outcomes of a short video-based randomized training intervention on wheat quality measurement and collective marketing among 15,000 wheat farmers in Ethiopia. Our results suggest that the intervention led to significant changes in farmers’ commercialization behaviors—namely, it prompted farmers to adopt behaviors geared toward assessing their wheat’s quality using easily implementable test-weight measures, assessing the accuracy of the equipment used by buyers in their kebeles (scales, in particular), and contacting more than one buyer before concluding a sale. The training also led to improvements in share of output sold, price received, and collective marketing, albeit with important limitations. First, farmers who measured their wheat quality received a higher price, but only if their wheat was of higher quality. Second, farmers who found that their wheat was of higher quality were more reluctant to aggregate their wheat (that is, sell their products through local cooperatives) than those who found that their wheat was of lower quality. Lastly, the training intervention led to better use of fertilizer in the following season. Our discovery that a short training intervention can significantly change farmers’ marketing and production behavior should encourage the development of further interventions aimed at enhancing farmers’ adoption of improved technologies and commercialization.
    Keywords: ETHIOPIA; EAST AFRICA; AFRICA SOUTH OF SAHARA; AFRICA, wheats; commercialization; quality; quality assurance; technology, randomized controlled trial; farmer's quality assessment; impact,
    Date: 2017
  17. By: Chia-Huei Wu; Sharon Parker; Long-Zeng Wu; Cynthia Lee
    Abstract: When and why do people engage in different forms of proactive behavior at work? We propose that, as a result of a process of trait activation, employees with different types of self-construal engage in distinct forms of proactive behavior if they work in environments consistent with their self-construals. In an experimental Study 1 (N = 61), we examined the effect of self-construals on proactivity and found that people primed with interdependent self-construals engaged in more work unit-oriented proactive behavior when job interdependence also was manipulated. Priming independent self-construals did not enhance career-oriented proactive behavior, even when we manipulated job autonomy. In a field Study 2 (N = 205), we found that employees with interdependent self-construals working in jobs with high interdependence reported higher work unit commitment and higher work unit-oriented proactive behavior than employees in low interdependent jobs. Employees with independent self-construals working in jobs with high autonomy also exhibited stronger career commitment and more career-oriented proactive behavior than those in jobs with low autonomy. This research offers a theoretical framework to explain how dispositional and situational factors interactively shape people's engagement in different forms of proactive behavior.
    Keywords: Self-construal; Job design; Proactive behavior; Trait activation; Commitment
    JEL: R14 J01
    Date: 2017–03–30
  18. By: Mani, Subha (Fordham University); Dasgupta, Utteeyo (Fordham University); Sharma, Smriti (UNU-WIDER); Singhal, Saurabh (UNU-WIDER)
    Abstract: We design an experiment to examine whether egalitarian preferences, and in particular, behindness aversion as well as preference for favorable inequality affect competitive choices differently among males and females. We find that selection into competitive environments is: (a) negatively related to egalitarian preferences, with smaller negative impacts of being egalitarian on females' choice of the tournament wage scheme, and (b) negatively associated with behindness aversion and positively related to preference for favorable inequality, with significant gender differences in the impact of these distributional preferences. Once we allow for the impact of distributional preferences, behavioral, personality, and socioeconomic characteristics to vary by gender, the pure gender effect is explained away. We find that gender gaps in distributional preferences along with selected personality traits are the most relevant explanations for gender differences in willingness to compete. This is an important result as these characteristics are per se malleable and amenable to policy interventions.
    Keywords: competitiveness, distributional preferences, gender differences
    JEL: C91 D03 D63 J16
    Date: 2017–03
  19. By: Barham, Tania; Macours, Karen; Maluccio, John
    Abstract: Interventions aimed at improving the nutrition, health, and education of young children are often motivated by their potential to break the intergenerational transmission of poverty. A prominent example, conditional cash transfers (CCTs), has become the anti-poverty program of choice in many developing countries. Evidence is inconclusive as to whether the demonstrated short-term gains translate into the longer-term educational and labor market benefits needed to fully justify them. This paper uses the randomized phase-in of a 3-year CCT program in Nicaragua to estimate long-term effects. We estimate these effects using experimental variation, complemented by two alternative non-experimental identification strategies. We focus on boys aged 9-12 years at the start of the program who, due to the program's eligibility criteria and prior school dropout patterns, were more likely to have been exposed to the program in the early treatment than in the late treatment group. Previously demonstrated short-term increases in schooling are sustained after 10 years, and there are substantial gains in learning. These improvements in human capital coincide with positive labor market returns - the young men are more likely to engage in wage work, migrate temporarily for better paying jobs, and have higher earnings. In Nicaragua, schooling and learning gains hence translate into earning gains for these young men, implying important long-term returns to CCT programs.
    Keywords: CCT; education; labor markets; learning; long-term effects
    JEL: I25 I28 I38 O12
    Date: 2017–03
  20. By: HIGUCHI Yuki; SASAKI Miyuki; NAKAMURO Makiko
    Abstract: We conducted a randomized experiment targeting 322 Japanese high school students to examine the impacts of a newly developed English learning program. The treated students were offered an opportunity to communicate for 25 minutes with English-speaking Filipino teachers via Skype several times a week over five months. The opportunities were offered as extracurricular activities and were not included in their grades. Results show that only 6% of the treated students completed the recommended number of lessons over the observation period. In addition, the Skype program made the treated students more interested in an international vocation and foreign affairs. However, probably due to the low completion rate, the students did not improve their English speaking and listening abilities as measured by a standardized test. Further investigation shows that the take-up rate was particularly low among students showing a tendency to procrastinate. These results suggest the importance of maintaining students' motivation to keep using such information and communications technology (ICT)-assisted learning programs if they are not already incorporated into the existing curriculum. Having procrastinators self-regulate may be especially crucial. However, significant positive changes in the students' attitude support the use of such programs even as extracurricular activities.
    Date: 2017–03
  21. By: Stefan Bechtold (ETH Zürich); Christoph Engel (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods)
    Abstract: U.S. intellectual property law is firmly rooted in utilitarian principles. Copyright law is viewed as a means to give proper monetary incentives to authors for their creative effort. Many European copyright systems pursue additional goals: Authors have the right to be named as author, to control alterations and to retract their work in case their artistic beliefs have changed. Protecting these “moral rights” might be justified by the preferences of typical authors. We present the first field experiment on moral rights revealing the true valuation of these rights by over 200 authors from 24 countries. A majority of authors are not willing to trade moral rights in the first place. They demand substantial prices in case they decide to trade. The differences between authors from the U.S. and Europe are small. These results call into question whether moral rights protection should differ across the Atlantic and whether a purely profit-based theory of copyright law is sufficient to capture the complex relationship between human behavior and creativity.
    Keywords: intellectual property, copyright, creativity, invention, moral right, willingness to pay
    JEL: C93 D03 K11 L82 O31 O34 O38
    Date: 2017–03
  22. By: Lange, Martin; Pfeiffer, Friedhelm; van den Berg, Gerard J.
    Abstract: The study analyses data collected among a group of young male refugees who participated in a randomized experiment. Refugees were randomly assigned to a soccer project, which aimed at facilitating labour market integration, or to a control group. We evaluate the randomization process, we discuss the survey design and implementation, and we summarize the main findings of the survey, focusing on labour market activity, pre-migration characteristics, and the monetary costs of the escape. In addition, we provide a preliminary outlook on the effectiveness of the course.
    Keywords: refugees,randomized experiment,labour market integration
    JEL: C93 F22 J15 J24
    Date: 2017
  23. By: Barr, Abigail; Dekker, Marleen; Janssens, Wendy; Kebede, Bereket; Kramer, Berber
    Abstract: Evidence that monogamous spouses often compromise household gains to maintain individual control over resources has informed the design of cash transfer schemes and other poverty alleviation programs. In polygynous households, decision making may be even less cooperative as co-wife conflict is common and welfare outcomes are often worse than in monogamous households, despite polygyny being associated with better ex ante prospects. Using a carefully designed series of two-person public goods games, we conduct a quantitative, ceteris paribus comparison of willingness to cooperate to maximize household gains across the two household types. We find that polygynous spouses and co-wives are less cooperative, one with another, than monogamous spouses. Co-wives are least cooperative toward each other and polygynous husbands are less cooperative with each of their wives than monogamous husbands are with their one wife. Finally, there are differences across the household types in the way husbands and wives condition their cooperativeness on how much they believe their spouses and co-wives will cooperate. Specifically, behavior in polygynous households is more reciprocal and apparently less altruistic than in monogamous households. This has implications for the design of poverty alleviation programs that transfer resources either in cash or in-kind.
    Keywords: poverty; households; marriage; cooperative activities; decision making; resource allocation; gender; women; sociology, cooperative decision making; polygyny,
    Date: 2017
  24. By: Feld, Jan (Victoria University of Wellington); Sauermann, Jan (SOFI, Stockholm University); de Grip, Andries (ROA, Maastricht University)
    Abstract: The Dunning–Kruger effect states that low performers vastly overestimate their performance while high performers more accurately assess their performance. Researchers usually interpret this empirical pattern as evidence that the low skilled are vastly overconfident while the high skilled are more accurate in assessing their skill. However, measurement error alone can lead to a negative relationship between performance and overestimation, even if skill and overconfidence are unrelated. To clarify the role of measurement error, we restate the Dunning–Kruger effect in terms of skill and overconfidence. We show that we can correct for bias caused by measurement error with an instrumental variable approach that uses a second performance as instrument. We then estimate the Dunning–Kruger effect in the context of the exam grade predictions of economics students, using their grade point average as an instrument for their exam grade. Our results show that the unskilled are more overconfident than the skilled. However, as we predict in our methodological discussion, this relationship is significantly weaker than ordinary least squares estimates suggest.
    Keywords: Dunning–Kruger effect, overconfidence, judgment error, measurement error, instrumental variable
    JEL: D03 I23
    Date: 2017–03
  25. By: Gaia, Alessandra
    Abstract: This paper evaluates the effect of switching an existing panel study from a unimode face-to-face design to a sequential mixed-mode design (web followed by face-to-face interviewing) on attrition. I use large-scale randomised experimental data from the Innovation Panel of Understanding Society. While the introduction of a mixed-mode design increases panel attrition one wave after the mode switch (IP6), the effect is eroded at subsequent waves (IP7-IP9). The offer of higher incentives to sample members in the mixed-mode group cancels the negative effect of mixed-mode on attrition one wave after the mode switch (IP6) and leads to higher response over time (IP7-IP9).
    Date: 2017–04–06

This nep-exp issue is ©2017 by Daniel Houser. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.