nep-exp New Economics Papers
on Experimental Economics
Issue of 2018‒03‒26
28 papers chosen by

  1. On the Role of Emotions in Experimental Litigation Contests By Gerald Eisenkopf; Tim Friehe; Ansgar Wohlschlegel
  2. The Effect of Incentives in Non-Routine Analytical Team Tasks - Evidence from a Field Experiment By Florian Englmaier; Stefan Grimm; David Schindler; Simeon Andreas Dermot Schudy
  3. Belief updating: Does the 'good-news, bad-news' asymmetry extend to purely financial domains? By Barron, Kai
  4. Blaming the Refugees? Experimental Evidence on Responsibility Attribution By Grimm, Stefan; Klimm, Felix
  5. Blaming the Refugees? Experimental Evidence On Responsibility Attribution By Grimm, Stefan; Klimm, Felix
  6. The effect of a mystery shopper scheme on prescriptions in primary care By Cheo, Roland; Ge, Ge; Godager, Geir; Liu, Rugang; Wang, Qiqi; Wang, Jian
  7. The Misaddressed Letter Experiment By Gweneth Leigh; Andrew Leigh
  8. Minimizing learning behavior in repeated real-effort tasks By Benndorf, Volker; Rau, Holger A.; Sölch, Christian
  9. Does Having Insurance Change Individuals Self-Confidence? By Guber, Raphael; Kocher, Martin; Winter, Joachim
  10. The Formation and Malleability of Dietary Habits: A Field Experiment with Low Income Families By Belot, Michèle; Berlin, Noemi; James, Jonathan; Skafida, Valeria
  11. Demand for off-grid solar electricity: Experimental evidence from Rwanda By Grimm, Michael; Lenz, Luciane; Peters, Jörg; Sievert, Maximiliane
  12. The Effect of Anchoring on Dishonest Behavior By Hiromasa Takahashi; Junyi Shen
  13. Unleashing Animal Spirits - Self-Control and Overpricing in Experimental Asset Markets By Kocher, Martin; Lucks, Konstantin; Schindler, David
  14. The effect of one-on-one assistance on the compliance with labor regulation. A field experiment in extremely vulnerable settings. By Cabrera, José María; Cid, Alejandro; Bernatzky, Marianne Bernatzky
  15. Compromise and Coordination: An Experimental Study By He, Simin; Wu, Jiabin
  16. Bubbles and financial professionals By Utz Weitzel; Christoph Huber; Florian Lindner; Jürgen Huber; Julia Rose; Michael Kirchler
  17. Student Feedback, Parent-Teacher Communication, and Academic Performance: Experimental Evidence from Rural China By Siebert, W. Stanley; Wei, Xiangdong; Wong, Ho Lun; Zhou, Xiang
  18. Evaluating Intergenerational Persistence of Economic Preferences: A Large Scale Experiment with Families in Bangladesh By Chowdhury, Shyamal; Sutter, Matthias; Zimmermann, Klaus F.
  19. Cognitive Skills and the Development of Strategic Sophistication By Fe, Eduardo; Gill, David
  20. Risk, Time Pressure, and Selection Effects By Kocher, Martin; Schindler, David; Trautmann, Stefan; Xu, Yilong
  21. Risk and Refugee Migration By Geraldine Bocquého; Marc Deschamps; Jenny Helstroffer; Julien Jacob; Majlinda Joxhe
  22. Suspicious Success - Cheating, Inequality Acceptance, and Political Preferences By Klimm, Felix
  23. Discrimination as favoritism: The private benefits and social costs of in-group favoritism in an experimental labor market By David Dickinson; David Masclet; Emmanuel Peterle
  24. Skills, Signals, and Employability: An Experimental Investigation By Marc Piopiunik; Guido Schwerdt; Lisa Simon; Ludger Wößmann
  25. Racial discrimination and white first name adoption: a field experiment in the Australian labour market By Chowdhury, Shyamal; Ooi, Evarn; Slonim, Robert
  26. Do consumers understand PCP car finance? An experimental investigation By McElvaney, Terry; Lunn, Pete; McGowan, Féidhlim
  27. Kinship Systems, Cooperation, and the Evolution of Culture By Benjamin Enke
  28. Parents’ aspirations and commitment with education. Lessons from a randomized control trial in a shantytown By Cid, Alejandro; Bernatzky, Marianne

  1. By: Gerald Eisenkopf (University of Vechta); Tim Friehe (University of Marburg); Ansgar Wohlschlegel (Portsmouth Business School)
    Abstract: We present experimental evidence on the influence of emotions on litigation. Our experiment compares the impact of an intentional taking of points, resulting in an unfair outcome, to that of an exogenous taking. The intentional taking induces negative emotions (e.g., anger), but this emotional arousal does not influence litigant behavior in terms of either filing a case or spending litigation effort. Our observation is independent of litigation being a one-staged or a (possibly) two-staged contest (i.e., one with an an appeal).
    Keywords: Litigation, Contest, Emotions, Experiment
    JEL: K41 D91 C91
    Date: 2018–03–17
  2. By: Florian Englmaier; Stefan Grimm; David Schindler; Simeon Andreas Dermot Schudy
    Abstract: Despite the prevalence of non-routine analytical team tasks in modern economies, little is known about how incentives influence performance in these tasks. In a field experiment with more than 3000 participants, we document a positive effect of bonus incentives on the probability of completion of such a task. Bonus incentives increase performance due to the reward rather than the reference point (performance threshold) they provide. The framing of bonuses (as gains or losses) plays a minor role. Incentives improve performance also in an additional sample of presumably less motivated workers. However, incentives reduce these workers’ willingness to “explore” original solutions.
    Keywords: team work, bonus, incentives, loss, gain, non-routine, exploration
    JEL: C92 C93 J33 D03 M52
    Date: 2018
  3. By: Barron, Kai
    Abstract: Bayes’ statistical rule remains the status quo for modeling belief updating in both normative and descriptive models of behavior under uncertainty. Recent research has questioned the use of Bayes’ rule in descriptive models of behavior, presenting evidence that people overweight ‘good news’ relative to ‘bad news’ when updating ego-relevant beliefs. In this paper, we present experimental evidence testing whether this ‘good-news, bad-news’ effect extends to belief updating in the domain of financial decision making, i.e. the domain of most applied economic decision making. We find no evidence of asymmetric updating in this domain. In contrast, the average participant in our experiment is strikingly close to Bayesian in her belief updating. However, we show that this average behavior masks substantial heterogeneity in updating behavior, but we find no evidence in support of a sizeable subgroup of asymmetric updators.
    Keywords: economic experiments; Bayes’ rule; belief updating; belief measurement; proper scoring rules; subjective probability, motivated beliefs
    JEL: C11 C91 D83
    Date: 2018–02–20
  4. By: Grimm, Stefan; Klimm, Felix
    Abstract: Do people blame refugees for negative events? We propose a novel experimental paradigm to measure discrimination in responsibility attribution towards Arabic refugees. Participants in the laboratory experience a positive or negative income shock, which is with equal probability caused by a random draw or another participant’s performance in a real effort task. Responsibility attribution is measured by beliefs about whether the shock is due to the other participant’s performance or the random draw. We find evidence for reverse discrimination: Natives attribute responsibility more favorably to refugees than to other natives. In particular, refugees are less often held responsible for negative income shocks. Moreover, natives with negative implicit a sociations towards Arabic names attribute responsibility less favorably to refugees than natives with positive associations. Since neither actual performance differences nor beliefs about natives’ and refugees’ performance can explain our finding of reverse discrimination, we rule out statistical discrimination as the driving force. We discuss explanations based on theories of self-image and identity concerns.
    Keywords: Refugees; discrimination; responsibility attribution
    JEL: C91 D03 D83 J15
    Date: 2018–03–08
  5. By: Grimm, Stefan (LMU Munich); Klimm, Felix (LMU Munich)
    Abstract: Do people blame refugees for negative events? We propose a novel experimental paradigm to measure discrimination in responsibility attribution towards Arabic refugees. Participants in the laboratory experience a positive or negative income shock, which is with equal probability caused by a random draw or another participant\'s performance in a real effort task. Responsibility attribution is measured by beliefs about whether the shock is due to the other participant\'s performance or the random draw. We find evidence for reverse discrimination: Natives attribute responsibility more favorably to refugees than to other natives. In particular, refugees are less often held responsible for negative income shocks. Moreover, natives with negative implicit associations towards Arabic names attribute responsibility less favorably to refugees than natives with positive associations. Since neither actual performance differences nor beliefs about natives\' and refugees\' performance can explain our finding of reverse discrimination, we rule out statistical discrimination as the driving force. We discuss explanations based on theories of self-image and identity concerns.
    Keywords: refugees; discrimination; responsibility attribution;
    JEL: C91 D03 D83 J15
    Date: 2018–03–12
  6. By: Cheo, Roland (1Center for Economic Research, Shandong University, China); Ge, Ge (Department of Health Management and Health Economics); Godager, Geir (Department of Health Management and Health Economics); Liu, Rugang (4Center for Health Economic Experiments and Public Policy, School of Public Health, Shandong University); Wang, Qiqi (School of Economics, Shandong University, China); Wang, Jian (Center for Health Economic Experiments and Public Policy, School of Public Health, Shandong University)
    Abstract: Health care systems in many countries are still characterized by limited availability of provider performance data which can be used to design and implement welfare improving reforms in the health sector. We question whether a simple mystery shopper scheme can be an effective measure to improve primary care quality in such settings. Using a randomized treatment-control design, we conduct a field experiment in primary care clinics in a Chinese city. We investigate whether informing clinics in the treatment group of a forthcoming mystery shopper audit influences the physicians’ prescribing behavior. As expected, we find that antibiotic medications are prescribed to patients in the majority of cases, even though such prescribing is not in accordance with current recommendations or guidelines. While the intervention did not cause significant reduction in antibiotic prescriptions, our results show that a mystery shopper scheme reduces overall unnecessary prescribing.
    Keywords: Field Experiment; Analysis of Health Care Markets; Government Policy; Information and Product Quality; Social Responsibility.
    JEL: C93 I11 I18 L15 M14
    Date: 2018–03–16
  7. By: Gweneth Leigh; Andrew Leigh
    Abstract: We design a new field experiment to test pro-social behaviour: will a household return a letter that has been incorrectly addressed? On average, we find that half of all letters were returned. Return rates do not vary significantly according to the gender, race or ethnicity of the fictitious addressee. However, return rates are higher in more affluent neighbourhoods.
    Keywords: field experiments, discrimination, altruism
    JEL: J71 C93 D64
    Date: 2018
  8. By: Benndorf, Volker; Rau, Holger A.; Sölch, Christian
    Abstract: In this paper, we discuss learning behavior and the heterogeneity of subjects' ability to perform in real-effort tasks. Afterwards, we present a novel variant of Erkal et al.'s (2011) encryption real-effort task which aims to minimize learning behavior in repeated settings. In the task, participants encrypt words into numbers. In our variant, we apply a double-randomization mechanism to minimize learning and heterogeneity. Existing experiments with repeated real-effort tasks find a performance increase of 12-14% between the first and second half. By contrast, our task mitigates learning behavior down to 2% between the first and second half. The data show that subjects show a small heterogeneity in performance.
    Keywords: Experimental Methods,Learning Behavior,Real Effort
    JEL: C90 C91
    Date: 2018
  9. By: Guber, Raphael (Munich Center for the Economics of Aging); Kocher, Martin (University of Vienna); Winter, Joachim (LMU Munich)
    Abstract: Recent research in contract theory on the effects of behavioral biases implicitly assumes that they are stable, in the sense of not being affected by the contracts themselves. In this paper, we provide evidence that this is not necessarily the case. We show that in an insurance context, being insured against losses that may be incurred in a real-effort task changes subjects\' self-confidence. Our novel experimental design allows us to disentangle selection into insurance from the effects of being insured by randomly assigning coverage after subjects revealed whether they want to be insured or not. We find that uninsured subjects are underconfident while those that obtain insurance have well-calibrated beliefs. Our results suggest that there might be another mechanism through which insurance affects behavior than just moral hazard.
    Keywords: overconfidence; insurance choice; underplacement;
    JEL: D84 D82 C91
    Date: 2018–03–12
  10. By: Belot, Michèle (European University Institute); Berlin, Noemi (University Paris Ouest-Nanterre); James, Jonathan (University of Bath); Skafida, Valeria (University of Edinburgh)
    Abstract: We conduct a field experiment to evaluate the extent to which dietary habits are malleable early on in childhood and later in life. We implement two treatments one that targets what people eat, the other that targets the timing and frequency of food intake. 285 low income families with young children were recruited and assigned either to a control group or one of the two treatments, each of them lasting for 12 consecutive weeks. In one treatment, families received food groceries at home for free for 12 weeks and were asked to prepare five specific healthy meals per week. In the other treatment, families were simply asked to reduce snacking and eat at regular times. We collected a range of measures of food preferences, dietary intake, as well as BMI and biomarkers based on blood samples. We find evidence that children's BMI distribution shifted significantly relative to the control group, i.e. they became relatively "thinner". We also find some evidence that their preferences have been affected by both treatments. On the other hand, we find little evidence of effects on parents. We conclude that exposure to a healthy diet and regularity of food intake possibly play a role in shaping dietary habits, but influencing dietary choices later on in life remains a major challenge.
    Keywords: diet, field experiments, habit formation, biomarkers
    JEL: I12 I14 I18
    Date: 2018–02
  11. By: Grimm, Michael; Lenz, Luciane; Peters, Jörg; Sievert, Maximiliane
    Abstract: The cost of providing electricity to the unconnected 1.1 billion people in developing countries is significant. High hopes are pinned on market-based dissemination of offgrid technologies to complement the expensive extension of public grid infrastructure. In this paper, we elicit the revealed willingness-to-pay for different off-grid solar technologies in a field experiment in rural Rwanda. Our findings show that households are willing to dedicate substantial parts of their budget to electricity, but not enough to reach cost-covering prices. Randomly assigned payment periods do not alter this finding. We interpret the results from two perspectives. First, we examine whether the United Nations' universal energy access goal can be reached via unsubsidized markets. Second, in a stylized welfare cost-benefit analysis, we compare a subsidization policy for off-grid solar electrification to a grid extension policy. Our findings suggest that, for most of rural Africa, off-grid solar is the preferable technology to reach mass electrification, and that grid infrastructure should concentrate on selected prosperous regions.
    Keywords: public infrastructure,technology adoption,electrification,willingness-to-pay,energy access
    JEL: D12 H54 O13 Q28 Q41
    Date: 2018
  12. By: Hiromasa Takahashi (Faculty of International Studies, Hiroshima City University); Junyi Shen (Research Institute for Economics and Business Administration (RIEB), Kobe University, Japan, and School of Economics, Shanghai University, China)
    Abstract: This study conducts experiments on dishonest behavior after anchoring the participants' expected reward to investigate the effect of anchoring on dishonest behavior. The experimental results show that those who are anchored to high reward behave less honestly than those anchored to low reward. This is because the anchoring changes participants' expected reward. Such a change in expected reward serve as participants' reference point to affect the likelihood of facing a loss frame where dishonest behaviors are more likely to occur.
    Keywords: Anchoring effect, Reference point, Dishonest behavior, Expected reward, Cheating, Risk attitude
    JEL: D40 D91
    Date: 2018–02
  13. By: Kocher, Martin (University of Vienna); Lucks, Konstantin (LMU Munich); Schindler, David (Tilburg University)
    Abstract: One explanation for overpricing on asset markets is a lack of traders\' self-control. Self-control is the individual capacity to override or inhibit undesired impulses that may drive prices. We implement the first experiment to address the causal relationship between self-control abilities and systematic overpricing on financial markets. Our setup can detect some of the channels through which individual self-control restrictions could transmit into irrational exuberance in markets. Our data indicate a large direct effect of restricted self-control abilities on market overpricing. Low self-control traders report stronger emotions after the market.
    Keywords: behavioral finance; trader behavior; self-control; experimental asset markets; overpricing;
    JEL: G02 G11 G12 D53 D84
    Date: 2018–03–12
  14. By: Cabrera, José María; Cid, Alejandro; Bernatzky, Marianne Bernatzky
    Abstract: This is the first paper to analyze the effects of intense personal assistance on the compliance with labor regulation, within a population of deeply disadvantaged informal workers, using a field experiment. We randomly assign one-on-one assistance to these workers, and, within this treatment group, we randomly assign money to cover the cost of fulfilling the legal requirements to get a permit to work on the streets. One month after the intervention, we find that a worker who receives one-on-one assistance is three times more likely to comply with the legal documentation required by the government than a worker in the control group. We also find that a worker who receives both one-on-one assistance and cost coverage is four times more likely to comply with the legal requirements. The findings of this study shed light on strategies to help highly vulnerable workers to comply with labor regulations.
    Keywords: case management; one-on-one assistance; randomized control trial; field experiment; labor regulation.
    JEL: C93 D04 D46 I30 J62
    Date: 2016–12–31
  15. By: He, Simin; Wu, Jiabin
    Abstract: This paper experimentally studies the role of a compromise option in a repeated battle-of-the-sexes game. We find that in a random-matching environment, compromise serves as an effective focal point and facilitates coordination, but fails to improve efficiency. However, in a fixed-partnership environment, compromise deters subjects from learning to play alternation, a more efficient but also more complex strategy. As a result, compromise hurts efficiency in the long-run by allowing subjects to coordinate on the less efficient outcome. We explore various behavioral mechanisms and suggest that people may fail to use an equal and efficient strategy if such a strategy is complex.
    Keywords: Compromise, Battle-of-the-Sexes, Repeated games, Behavioral game theory, Experimental economics.
    JEL: C72 C92
    Date: 2018
  16. By: Utz Weitzel; Christoph Huber; Florian Lindner; Jürgen Huber; Julia Rose; Michael Kirchler
    Abstract: The efficiency of financial markets and their potential to produce bubbles are central topics in academic and professional debates. Yet, surprisingly little is known about the contribution of financial professionals to price efficiency. To close this gap, we run 86 experimental markets with 294 professionals and 384 students. We report that professional markets with bubble-drivers-capital inflows or high initial capital supply-are susceptible to bubbles, but they are significantly more efficient than student markets. In a survey with 245 professionals and students we show that cognitive skills and risk attitudes do not explain subject pool differences in bubble formation.
    Keywords: Experimental finance, financial professionals, price efficiency, financial bubbles
    JEL: C92 D84 G02 G14
    Date: 2018–04
  17. By: Siebert, W. Stanley (University of Birmingham); Wei, Xiangdong (Lingnan University); Wong, Ho Lun (Lingnan University); Zhou, Xiang (University of Birmingham)
    Abstract: This study reports a randomized controlled trial to improve teacher-student-parent feedback, conducted in a rural county in China with many left-behind children. Data are collected from over 4,000 primary schoolchildren (8 to 10 years old) over two school terms. We find that bi-weekly student feedbacks using our special scorecard of schoolwork and behavior improve mathematics results by 0.16 to 0.20 standard deviations, with 0.09 for language. Communicating these assessments also to parents produces further large mathematics benefits for young left-behind children, about 0.30 standard deviations. A low-cost investment in better feedback thus brings significant achievement gains especially for disadvantaged children.
    Keywords: student assessment, parent-teacher communication, academic performance, randomized controlled trial, rural China
    JEL: C93 I21 J24
    Date: 2018–02
  18. By: Chowdhury, Shyamal (University of Sydney); Sutter, Matthias (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods); Zimmermann, Klaus F. (University of Bonn)
    Abstract: Economic preferences – like time, risk and social preferences – have been shown to be very influential for real-life outcomes, such as educational achievements, labor market outcomes, or health status. We contribute to the recent literature that has examined how and when economic preferences are formed, putting particular emphasis on the role of intergenerational transmission of economic preferences within families. Our paper is the first to run incentivized experiments with fathers and mothers and their children by drawing on a unique dataset of 1,999 members of Bangladeshi families, including 911 children, aged 6-17 years, and 544 pairs of mothers and fathers. We find a large degree of intergenerational persistence as the economic preferences of mothers and fathers are significantly positively related to their children's economic preferences. Importantly, we find that socio-economic status of a family has no explanatory power as soon as we control for parents' economic preferences. A series of robustness checks deals with the role of older siblings, the similarity of parental preferences, and the average preferences within a child's village.
    Keywords: intergenerational transmission of preferences, time preferences, risk preferences, social preferences, children, parents, Bangladesh, socio-economic status, experiment
    JEL: C90 D1 D90 D81 D64 J13 J24 J62
    Date: 2018–02
  19. By: Fe, Eduardo (University of Strathclyde); Gill, David (Purdue University)
    Abstract: In this paper we investigate how observable cognitive skills influence the development of strategic sophistication. To answer this question, we study experimentally how psychometric measures of theory-of-mind and cognitive ability (or 'fluid intelligence') work together with age to determine the strategic ability and level-k behavior of children in a variety of incentivized strategic interactions. We find that better theory-of-mind and cognitive ability predict strategic sophistication in competitive games. Furthermore, age and cognitive ability act in tandem as complements, while age and theory-of-mind operate independently. Older children respond to information about the cognitive ability of their opponent, which provides support for the emergence of a sophisticated strategic theory-of-mind. Finally, theory-of-mind and age strongly predict whether children respond to intentions in a gift-exchange game, while cognitive ability has no influence, suggesting that different psychometric measures of cognitive skill correspond to different cognitive processes in strategic situations that involve the understanding of intentions.
    Keywords: cognitive skills, theory-of-mind, cognitive ability, fluid intelligence, strategic sophistication, age, children, experiment, level-k, bounded rationality, non-equilibrium thinking, intentions, gift-exchange game, competitive game, strategic game, strategic interaction
    JEL: C91 D91 J24
    Date: 2018–02
  20. By: Kocher, Martin (University of Vienna); Schindler, David (Tilburg University); Trautmann, Stefan (University of Heidelberg); Xu, Yilong (Uinversity of Heidelberg)
    Abstract: Time pressure is a central aspect of economic decision making nowadays. It is therefore natural to ask how time pressure affects decisions, and how to detect individual heterogeneity in the ability to successfully cope with time pressure. In the context of risky decisions, we ask whether a person\'s performance under time pressure can be predicted by measurable behavior and traits, and whether such measurement itself may be affected by selection issues. We find that the ability to cope with time pressure varies significantly across decision makers, leading to selected subgroups that differ in terms of their observed behaviors and personal traits. Moreover, measures of cognitive ability and intellectual efficiency jointly predict individuals\' decision quality and ability to keep their decision strategy under time pressure.
    Keywords: risk; cognitive ability; selection; time pressure;
    JEL: C91 D81
    Date: 2018–03–14
  21. By: Geraldine Bocquého; Marc Deschamps; Jenny Helstroffer; Julien Jacob; Majlinda Joxhe
    Abstract: This paper uses the experimental setup of Tanaka et al. (2010) to measure refugees’ risk preferences. A sample of 206 asylum seekers was interviewed in 2017-18 in Luxembourg. Contrary to studies which focus on risk aversion in general, we analyze its components using a cumulative prospect theory (CPT) framework. We show that refugees exhibit particularly low levels of risk aversion compared to other populations and that CPT provides a better fit for modelling risk attitudes. Moreover, we include randomised temporary treatments provoking emotions and find a small significant impact on probability distortion. Robustness of the Tanaka et al. (2010) experimental framework is confirmed by including treatments regarding the embedding effect. Finally, we propose a theoretical model of refugee migration that integrates the insights from our experimental outcomes regarding the functional form of refugees’ decision under risk and the estimated parameter values. The model is then simulated using the data from our study.
    Keywords: Refugee migration, risk preferences, experimental economics, cumulative prospect theory, psychological priming.
    JEL: C93 D74 D81 D91 F22
    Date: 2018
  22. By: Klimm, Felix (LMU Munich)
    Abstract: Supporters of left-wing parties typically place more emphasis on redistributive policies than right-wing voters. I investigate whether this difference in tolerating inequality is amplified by suspicious success - achievements that may arise from cheating. Using a laboratory experiment, I exogenously vary cheating opportunities for stakeholders who work on a real effort task and earn money according to their self-reported performances. An impartial spectator is able to redistribute the earnings between the stakeholders, although it is not possible to detect cheating. I find that the opportunity to cheat leads to different views on whether to accept inequality. Left-wing spectators substantially reduce inequality when cheating is possible, while the treatment has no significant effect on choices of right-wing spectators. Since neither differences in beliefs nor differences in norms about cheating can explain this finding, it seems to be driven by a difference in preferences. These results suggest that redistributive preferences will diverge even more once public awareness increases that inequality may be to a certain extent created by cheating.
    Keywords: cheating; inequality; fairness; political preferences; redistribution;
    JEL: C91 D63 D83 H23 H26
    Date: 2018–03–12
  23. By: David Dickinson (Department of Economics - Appalachian State University); David Masclet (CREM - Centre de recherche en économie et management - UNICAEN - Université de Caen Normandie - NU - Normandie Université - UR1 - Université de Rennes 1 - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, CIRANO - Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en analyse des organisations - UQAM - Université du Québec à Montréal); Emmanuel Peterle (CRESE - Centre de REcherches sur les Stratégies Economiques - UFC - UBFC - Université Bourgogne Franche-Comté - UFC - Université de Franche-Comté)
    Date: 2018–02–26
  24. By: Marc Piopiunik; Guido Schwerdt; Lisa Simon; Ludger Wößmann
    Abstract: As skills of labor-market entrants are usually not directly observed by employers, individuals acquire skill signals. To study which signals are valued by employers, we simultaneously and independently randomize a broad range of skill signals on pairs of resumes of fictitious applicants among which we ask a large representative sample of German human-resource managers to choose. We find that signals in all three studied domains – cognitive skills, social skills, and maturity – have a significant effect on being invited for a job interview. Consistent with the relevance, expectedness, and credibility of different signals, the specific signal that is effective in each domain differs between apprenticeship applicants and college graduates. While GPAs and social skills are significant for both genders, males are particularly rewarded for maturity and females for IT and language skills. Older HR managers value school grades less and other signals more, whereas HR managers in larger firms value college grades more.
    Keywords: signals, cognitive skills, social skills, resume, hiring, labor market
    JEL: J24 J21
    Date: 2018
  25. By: Chowdhury, Shyamal; Ooi, Evarn; Slonim, Robert
    Abstract: Minorities such as Chinese households in Australia spend twice as much on a child’s education relative to White families. However, despite such high investment, there is a large Chinese-White wage and employment gap. In this paper we investigate: first, if labour market discrimination is a possible cause of the wage and employment gaps observed between Chinese minorities and Whites. We address this by sending CVs to real job advertisements, and find that there is a large gap against Chinese CVs both in entry level high-skilled jobs and lowskilled administrative assistant jobs. Second, to measure labour market responses to integration signals, we also sent a third category of CVs that explicitly combines a Chinese last name with a White first name. This results in a significant decrease in White-Chinese gaps in interview offer. Third, we aim to learn what inferences are made when employers see these White names adopted by Chinese and potentially by other minorities. Understanding this will help to formulate policies helpful for parental investments and employers’ education to reduce employment and wage gaps observed between minorities and Whites in Australian labour market.
    Keywords: racial discrimination; field experiment; labour market
    Date: 2017–06
  26. By: McElvaney, Terry; Lunn, Pete; McGowan, Féidhlim
    Date: 2018
  27. By: Benjamin Enke
    Abstract: An influential body of psychological and anthropological theories holds that societies exhibit heterogeneous cooperation systems that differ both in their level of in-group favoritism and in the tools that they employ to enforce cooperative behavior. According to some of these theories, entire bundles of functional psychological adaptations – religious beliefs, moral values, negative reciprocity, emotions, and social norms – serve as “psychological police officer” in different cooperation regimes. This paper uses an anthropological measure of the tightness of historical kinship systems to study the structure of cooperation patterns and enforcement devices across historical ethnicities, contemporary countries, ethnicities within countries, and among migrants. The results document that societies with loose ancestral kinship ties cooperate and trust broadly, which appears to be enforced through a belief in moralizing gods, individualizing moral values, internalized guilt, altruistic punishment, and large-scale institutions. Societies with a historically tightly knit kinship structure, on the other hand, cheat on and distrust the out-group but readily support in-group members in need. This cooperation regime in turn is enforced by communal moral values, emotions of external shame, revenge-taking, and local governance structures including strong social norms. These patterns suggest that various seemingly unrelated aspects of culture are all functional and ultimately serve the same purpose of regulating economic behavior.
    Keywords: Kinship, culture, cooperation, enforcement devices
    JEL: D00 O10
    Date: 2018
  28. By: Cid, Alejandro; Bernatzky, Marianne
    Abstract: This paper documents the impact of an after-school program called Apoyo Escolar, sited in one of the most vulnerable neighborhoods of a developing country, Uruguay. The outcomes of interest are academic achievement, behavior at school and grade retention. By a field experiment, we explore the interaction effects of being randomly assigned to an after-school program with an indicator of parent commitment - an unaddressed question in previous literature. We found novel results that should guide policy design. Increasing time spent in safe settings does not guarantee academic success: the after-school program is effective in improving academic performance when children have committed parents. And students’ performance at school is highly correlated with parents’ educational expectations. Thus, the interaction between hope, family and after-school for disadvantaged children deserves more attention in policy design.
    Keywords: after-school program; poverty; education; impact evaluation; family; parenting
    JEL: I2 I24 J13
    Date: 2017

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