nep-exp New Economics Papers
on Experimental Economics
Issue of 2020‒03‒23
34 papers chosen by

  1. Competition Among Charities: Field Experimental Evidence from a State Income Tax Credit for Charitable Giving By Chandrayee Chatterjee; James C. Cox; Michael K. Price; Florian Rundhammer
  2. Let's Chat... When Communication Promotes Efficiency in Experimental Asset Markets By Brice Corgnet; Mark DeSantis; David Porter
  3. Shopper’s behavioural responses to ‘front-of-pack’ nutrition logo formats: GDA Diet-Logo vs. 6 alternative Choice-Logos By Laurent Muller; Bernard Ruffieux
  4. Improving Access and Quality in Early Childhood Development Programs : Experimental Evidence from The Gambia By Blimpo,Moussa Pouguinimpo; Amaro Da Costa Luz Carneiro,Pedro Manuel; Jervis,Pamela; Pugatch,Todd
  5. Do grassroots interventions relax behavioral constraints to the adoption of nutrition-sensitive food production systems?: By Alvi, Muzna; Ward, Patrick S.; Makhija, Simrin; Spielman, David J.
  6. Spread of Information, Inequality and Cooperation By Pablo Brañas-Garza; Elena Molis; Levent Neyse
  7. Informing employees in small and medium sized firms about training: results of a randomized field experiment By van den Berg, Gerard J.; Dauth, Christine; Homrighausen, Pia; Stephan, Gesine
  8. Can transfers and behavior change communication reduce intimate partner violence four years post-program? Experimental evidence from Bangladesh: By Roy, Shalini; Hidrobo, Melissa; Hoddinott, John F.; Koch, Bastien; Ahmed, Akhter
  9. Social Mobility Perceptions and Inequality Acceptance By Dietmar Fehr; Daniel Müller; Marcel Preuss
  10. A New Mechanism to Alleviate the Crises of Confidence in Science-With An Application to the Public Goods Game By Luigi Butera; Philip J. Grossman; Daniel Houser; John A. List; Marie-Claire Villeval
  11. Theory of Mind among Disadvantaged Children: Evidence from a Field Experiment By Gary Charness; John List; Aldo Rustichini; Anya Samek; Jeroen van de Ven
  12. Do Women Shy Away from Public Speaking? A Field Experiment By De Paola, Maria; Lombardo, Rosetta; Pupo, Valeria; Scoppa, Vincenzo
  13. Harnessing the Power of Social Incentives to Curb Shirking in Teams By Brice Corgnet; Brian Gunia; Roberto Hernán González
  14. Transfers, nutrition programming, and economic well-being: Experimental evidence from Bangladesh: By Ahmed, Akhter; Hoddinott, John F.; Roy, Shalini; Sraboni, Esha
  15. Food transfers, cash transfers, behavior change communication and child nutrition: Evidence from Bangladesh: By Ahmed, Akhter; Hoddinott, John F.; Roy, Shalini
  16. Nonverbal content and swift trust: An experiment on digital communication By Zakaria Babutsidze; Nobuyuki Hanaki; Adam Zylbersztejn
  17. Measuring Farm Labor : Survey Experimental Evidence from Ghana By Gaddis,Isis; Siwatu,Gbemisola Oseni; Palacios-Lopez,Amparo; Pieters,Janneke
  18. Forward Guidance and Household Expectations By Coibion, Olivier; Georgarakos, Dimitris; Gorodnichenko, Yuriy; Weber, Michael
  19. Got Milk? Using Nudges to Reduce Consumption of Added Sugar By Chien-Yu Lai; John List; Anya Samek
  20. A “Reference Price Auction” to Buy or Sell Different Assets Simultaneously By Olivier Armantier
  21. Becoming Through Doing: How Experimental Spaces Enable Organizational Identity Work By Neva Bojovic; Valérie Sabatier; Emmanuel Coblence
  22. An experimental study of attitudes to changing water charges in Scotland By Belton, Cameron; Robertson, Deirdre; Lunn, Pete
  23. Inclusive Cognitive Hierarchy By Koriyama, Yukio; Ozkes, Ali
  24. Enhancing Young Children's Language Acquisition through Parent-Child Book-Sharing : A Randomized Trial in Rural Kenya By Knauer,Heather Ashley; Jakiela,Pamela; Ozier,Owen; Aboud,Frances E; Fernald,Lia C.H.
  25. Market Design, Human Behavior and Management By Yan Chen; Peter Cramton; John List; Axel Ockenfels
  26. Talkin' Bout Cooperation By Özkes, Ali; Hanaki, Nobuyuki
  27. Identifying and debunking environmental-related false news stories—An experimental study By Gruener, Sven
  28. Parental Beliefs, Investments, and Child Development : Evidence from a Large-Scale Experiment By Amaro Da Costa Luz Carneiro,Pedro Manuel; Galasso,Emanuela; Lopez Garcia,Italo Xavier; Bedregal,Paula; Cordero,Miguel
  29. The Classical Theory of Supply and Demand By Sabiou M. Inoua; Vernon L. Smith
  30. Housing Discrimination and Pollution Exposures in the United States By Peter Christensen; Ignacio Sarmiento-Barbieri; Christopher Timmins
  31. Does identity affect aspirations in rural India? An examination from the lens of caste and gender: By Alvi, Muzna Fatima; Ward, Patrick S.; Makhija, Simrin; Spielman, David J.
  32. Consequentiality, elicitation formats, and the willingness-to-pay for green electricity: Evidence from Germany By Andor, Mark Andreas; Frondel, Manuel; Horvath, Marco
  33. Working too much for too little: stochastic rewards cause work addiction By Brice Corgnet; Simon Gaechter; Roberto Hernán González
  34. Using behavioural science to help fight the coronavirus By Lunn, Pete; Belton, Cameron; Lavin, Ciarán; McGowan, Féidhlim; Timmons, Shane; Robertson, Deirdre

  1. By: Chandrayee Chatterjee; James C. Cox; Michael K. Price; Florian Rundhammer
    Abstract: Donations to charity are widely encouraged by policymakers through targeted tax incentives such as tax credits for contributions only to qualifying causes. We use an online field experiment to test how the largest such program, Arizona\'s state income tax credit for donations to qualifying charities, affects donation decisions in a modified dictator game. In the experiment, we randomize whether subjects receive detailed information about the tax credit program prior to selecting potential recipients and completing the allocation task. We also vary the number of charities that subjects can select as recipients along with the (tax-credit) qualifying vs. non-qualifying composition of the choice set. We find that average giving is unaffected by the information provision and composition of the choice set. However, we find that subjects direct significantly more funds towards qualifying charities when provided information about the tax program; an effect that is enhanced when subjects select multiple recipients from lists that contain a mixture of qualifying and non-qualifying organizations. Our results underline the importance of including a portfolio of choices when studying the impact of targeted incentives because this makes it possible to identify a central feature of our data: participants \"rob Peter\" (non-qualifying charities) \"to pay Paul\" (qualifying charities).
    Date: 2020–03
  2. By: Brice Corgnet (EMLYON Business School); Mark DeSantis (Argyros School of Business and Economics & Economic Science Institute, Chapman University); David Porter (Argyros School of Business and Economics & Economic Science Institute, Chapman University)
    Abstract: The growing prevalence of stock market chat rooms and social media suggests communication between traders may affect market outcomes. Using data from a series of laboratory experiments, we study the causal effect of trader communication on the price efficiency of markets. We show that communication allows markets to convey private information more effectively. This effect is most pronounced when the communication platform publicizes a reputation score that might identify a person as not being truthful. This illustrates the need for market designers to consider social interactions when designing market institutions to leverage the social motives that foster information aggregation.
    Keywords: Information Aggregation; Market Efficiency; Communication; Experimental Asset Markets; Social Market Design
    JEL: C92 G02 G14
    Date: 2020
  3. By: Laurent Muller (GAEL - Laboratoire d'Economie Appliquée de Grenoble - Grenoble INP - Institut polytechnique de Grenoble - Grenoble Institute of Technology - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UGA - Université Grenoble Alpes - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Bernard Ruffieux (GAEL - Laboratoire d'Economie Appliquée de Grenoble - Grenoble INP - Institut polytechnique de Grenoble - Grenoble Institute of Technology - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UGA - Université Grenoble Alpes - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement)
    Abstract: A Framed Field Experiment was implemented in France in order to compare the relative behavioural responses and then the induced nutritional effectiveness of seven front-of-pack logo formats: The Guideline Daily Amounts (GDA), and six ‘choice logos' such as Green Keyhole or Traffic Lights. From a consumer point of view, while GDA requires a demanding global-diet heuristic, the choice logos require an easy product comparison heuristic. Our six ‘choice logos' are different after 3 criteria: aggregate vs. analytical information, shelf vs. all products point of reference, multicolour logos vs. ‘only green' logos. We measure the effect of each logo on the nutritional quality of actual consumers' shopping baskets in a controlled experimental shop. We use a standard criterion aggregating the overall density of free sugar, saturated fatty acid and salt. We find that different logo formats generate different nutritional impacts. Some choice logos have better nutritional impacts than GDA. Aggregate and multicolour logos induce best responses. Shelf-referenced logos are not more efficient but they trigger very different behavioural trajectories than logos referenced on all-products.
    Date: 2020–02
  4. By: Blimpo,Moussa Pouguinimpo; Amaro Da Costa Luz Carneiro,Pedro Manuel; Jervis,Pamela; Pugatch,Todd
    Abstract: Early childhood experiences lay the foundation for outcomes later in life. Policy makers in developing countries face a dual challenge of promoting access to and quality of early childhood development services, but evidence on how to manage this trade-off is scarce. This paper studies two experiments of early childhood development programs in The Gambia: one increasing access to services, and another improving service quality. In the first experiment, new community-based early childhood development centers were introduced to randomly chosen villages that had no preexisting, structured early childhood development services. In the second experiment, a randomly assigned subset of existing early childhood development centers received intensive provider training. The analysis finds no evidence that either intervention improved average levels of child development. Exploratory analysis suggests that the first experiment, which increased access to relatively low-quality early childhood development services, led to declines in child development among children from less disadvantaged households. The evidence supports that these households may have been steered away from better quality early childhood settings in their homes. Comparisons of observationally similar children across experiments reveal that existing early childhood development centers increased language skills by 0.4 standard deviation relative to the community-based alternative, reflecting differences in program quality.
    Date: 2019–02–13
  5. By: Alvi, Muzna; Ward, Patrick S.; Makhija, Simrin; Spielman, David J.
    Abstract: In many developing countries, agricultural policies and programs are often designed in a way to promote productivity growth with modern inputs and technologies, and with limited reference to the nutrition gains that can be made through production diversification. We test whether grassroots programs can relax behavioral constraints inhibiting the adoption of diversified nutrition-sensitive production systems. We use a series of lab-in-field experiments and survey instruments in Odisha, India to elicit male and female farmers’ preferences for risk, aversion to loss, empowerment and aspirations for one’s self and children. We find that respondents in villages where grassroots interventions were promoted showed significantly lower levels of risk aversion, higher levels of loss aversion and higher aspirations for themselves and their children, along with improvements in production and consumption diversity. Insights into the prevalence of behavioral constraints and interventions that relax such constraints fills an important knowledge gap in how to design programs that promote more nutrition-sensitive food production systems.
    Keywords: INDIA, SOUTH ASIA, ASIA, nutrition, production systems, agricultural productivity, diversification, food systems, intervention, agri-food systems, laboratory-in-field experiments, prospect theory, public goods games, diversified food, grassroots interventions,
    Date: 2019
  6. By: Pablo Brañas-Garza (Loyola University, Cordoba); Elena Molis (Department of Economic Theory and Economic History, University of Granada.); Levent Neyse (SOEP at DIW, Berlin, Germany)
    Abstract: With the rise of information technologies, citizens can compare public good efficiencies between countries easier now and being aware of large efficiency differences may affect tax compliance behavior. We experimentally test whether contributions in the public goods game are sensitive to comparative information regarding marginal per capita returns of other groups. Our experimental results indeed suggest that comparative information creates polarization in contribution levels in the presence of large inequality between comparison groups.
    Keywords: Public Goods; Inequality; Cooperation; Information; Experiment
    JEL: C9 H4 D8
  7. By: van den Berg, Gerard J. (IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy); Dauth, Christine (IAB (The Institute for Employment Research); Homrighausen, Pia (IAB (The Institute for Employment Research); Stephan, Gesine (IAB (The Institute for Employment Research)
    Abstract: We mailed brochures to 10,000 randomly chosen employed German workers eligible for a subsizided occupational training program called WeGebAU,informing them about the importance of skill-upgrading occupational training in general and about WeGebAU in particular. Using survey and register data,we estimate effects of the information treatment brochure on awareness of the program, on take-up of WeGebAU and other training,and on subsequent employment. The bRochure more than doubles awareness of the program. There are no effects on WeGebAU take-up but participation in other(unsubsidized) training increasesamong employees aged below 45. Short-term labor market outcomes are not affected.
    Keywords: employment; wages; skills; randomized controlled trial; information treatment
    JEL: J24 J65
    Date: 2020–02–27
  8. By: Roy, Shalini; Hidrobo, Melissa; Hoddinott, John F.; Koch, Bastien; Ahmed, Akhter
    Abstract: Little is known about whether reductions in intimate partner violence (IPV) from cash transfer programs persist over the longer term. Using a randomized controlled trial design, we show that a program providing poor women in rural Bangladesh with cash or food transfers, alongside nutrition behavior change communication (BCC), led to sustained reductions in IPV 4 years after the program ended. Transfers alone showed no sustained impacts on IPV. Evidence suggests cash and BCC led to more sustained impacts on IPV than food and BCC – through persistent increases in women’s bargaining power, men’s costs of perpetrating violence, and poverty-related emotional well-being.
    Keywords: BANGLADESH, SOUTH ASIA, ASIA, social protection, cash transfer, gender, sustainability, domestic violence, behavior change communication, intimate partner violence, J12 Marriage, Marital Dissolution, Family Structure, Domestic Abuse, D10 Household Behavior: General, I38 Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty: Government Programs, Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs, O10 Economic Development: General,
    Date: 2019
  9. By: Dietmar Fehr; Daniel Müller; Marcel Preuss
    Abstract: This paper examines how perceptions of social mobility affect acceptance of inequality. We conduct a randomized information intervention in a large and heterogeneous sample of Germans to manipulate beliefs about social mobility. While the information treatment renders social mobility perceptions significantly more pessimistic, we find strong evidence that these more pessimistic perceptions change neither revealed distributional preferences nor support for greater redistribution or education spending. We present suggestive evidence for the lack of a measurable treatment effect. Participants do not seem to perceive low mobility rates as unfair, as they do not link the persistence of socioeconomic status to luck. Finally, the large sample size allows us to rule out economically meaningful treatment effects.
    Keywords: Social mobility, distributional preferences, inequality, survey experiment
    JEL: C93 D31 H23 H24 H41
    Date: 2020–02
  10. By: Luigi Butera; Philip J. Grossman; Daniel Houser; John A. List; Marie-Claire Villeval
    Abstract: Creation of empirical knowledge in economics has taken a dramatic turn in the past few decades. One feature of the new research landscape is the nature and extent to which scholars generate data. Today, in nearly every field the experimental approach plays an increasingly crucial role in testing theories and informing organizational decisions. Whereas there is much to appreciate about this revolution, recently a credibility crisis has taken hold across the social sciences, arguing that an important component of Fischer (1935)'s tripod has not been fully embraced: replication. Indeed, while the importance of replications is not debatable scientifically, current incentives are not sufficient to encourage replications from the individual researcher's perspective. We analyze a novel mechanism that promotes replications by leveraging mutually beneficial gains between scholars and editors. We develop a model capturing the trade-offs involved in seeking independent replications before submission of a paper to journals. We demonstrate the operation of this method via an investigation of the effects of Knightian uncertainty on cooperation rates in public goods games, a pervasive and yet largely unexplored feature in the literature.
    JEL: A11 C18 C92 C93 D82
    Date: 2020–02
  11. By: Gary Charness; John List; Aldo Rustichini; Anya Samek; Jeroen van de Ven
    Abstract: Theory of Mind (ToM), the ability to correctly attribute mental states to others, is important in social interactions. We evaluate the development of ToM in about 800 mostly disadvantaged children. We next conduct a field experiment with about 160 children in which we find that the low ToM rates for these disadvantaged children improve substantially in environments where the presence of other children is made salient. We see that ToM performance increases for both younger and older children in the treatment with strong salience, but that the treatment with weaker salience seems to be only effective in improving the ToM rates for older children.
    Date: 2020
  12. By: De Paola, Maria (University of Calabria); Lombardo, Rosetta (University of Calabria); Pupo, Valeria (University of Calabria); Scoppa, Vincenzo (University of Calabria)
    Abstract: Public speaking is an important skill for career prospects and for leadership positions, but many people tend to avoid it because it generates anxiety. We run a field experiment to analyze whether in an incentivized setting men and women show differences in their willingness to speak in public. The experiment involved more than 500 undergraduate students who could gain two points to add to the final grade of their exam by orally presenting solutions to a problem set. Students were randomly assigned to present only to the instructor or in front of a large audience (a class of 100 or more). We find that while women are more willing to present face-to-face, they are considerably less likely to give a public presentation. Female aversion to public speaking does not depend on differences in ability, risk aversion, self-confidence and self-esteem. The aversion to public speaking greatly reduces for daughters of working women. From data obtained through an on-line Survey we also show that neither increasing the gains deriving from public speaking nor allowing participants more time to prepare enable to close the gender gap.
    Keywords: public speaking, psychological gender differences, gender, leadership, glass ceiling, field experiment
    JEL: D91 C93 M50
    Date: 2020–02
  13. By: Brice Corgnet (emlyon business school, 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 - Université de Lyon - UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Étienne] - Université de Lyon - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Brian Gunia (JHU - Johns Hopkins University); Roberto Hernán González (BSB - Burgundy School of Business (BSB) - Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Dijon Bourgogne (ESC), CEREN - Centre de Recherche sur l'ENtreprise [Dijon] - BSB - Burgundy School of Business (BSB) - Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Dijon Bourgogne (ESC), UBFC - Université Bourgogne Franche-Comté [COMUE])
    Abstract: We study several solutions to shirking in teams that trigger social incentives by reshaping the workplace social context. Using an experimental design, we manipulate social pressure at work by varying the type of workplace monitoring and the extent to which employees engage in social interaction. This design allows us to assess the effectiveness as well as the popularity of each solution. Despite similar effectiveness in boosting productivity across solutions, only organizational systems involving social interaction (via chat) were at least as popular as a baseline treatment. This suggests that any solution based on promoting social interaction is more likely to be embraced by workers than monitoring systems alone.
    Keywords: Laboratory Experiments,Moral Hazard in Teams,Social Pressure,Social Incentives
    Date: 2020
  14. By: Ahmed, Akhter; Hoddinott, John F.; Roy, Shalini; Sraboni, Esha
    Abstract: Interest has grown in leveraging cash transfer programs with nutrition interventions to improve child nutrition at scale. However, little is known about how doing so affects household economic well-being. We study a program providing cash or food transfers, with or without nutrition behavior change communication (BCC), to poor women in rural Bangladesh. We find that adding BCC to cash or food transfers leads to larger impacts on both consumption and assets - an apparent puzzle, given the transfer value is unchanged. Evidence suggests this occurs through the BCC inducing increases in income generation - plausibly by improving households’ social capital and empowerment.
    Keywords: BANGLADESH, SOUTH ASIA, ASIA, nutrition, children, economics, behaviour, social capital, empowerment, food security, social protection, assets, livelihoods, cash transfers, food transfers, behaviour change communication, asset accumulation,
    Date: 2019
  15. By: Ahmed, Akhter; Hoddinott, John F.; Roy, Shalini
    Abstract: The importance of children’s nutritional status for subsequent human capital formation, the limited evidence of the effectiveness of social protection interventions on child nutrition, and the absence of knowledge on the intra-household impacts of cash and food transfers or how they are shaped by complementary programming motivate this paper. We implemented two, linked randomized control trials in rural Bangladesh, with treatment arms including cash transfers, a food ration, or a mixed food and cash transfer, as well as treatments where cash and nutrition behavior change communication (BCC) or where food and nutrition BCC were provided. Only cash plus nutrition BCC had a significant impact on nutritional status, but its effect on height-for-age z scores (HAZ) was large, 0.25SD. We explore the mechanisms underlying this impact. Improved diets – including increased intake of animal source foods – along with reductions in illness in the cash plus BCC treatment arm are consistent with the improvement we observe in children’s HAZ.
    Keywords: BANGLADESH, SOUTH ASIA, ASIA, social protection, nutrition, children, cash transfers, behavior, food transfer, behavior change communication, O10 Economic Development: General, I38 Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty: Government Programs, Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs, D13 Household Production and Intrahousehold Allocation,
    Date: 2019
  16. By: Zakaria Babutsidze (SKEMA Business School - SKEMA Business School); Nobuyuki Hanaki (Osaka University [Osaka]); Adam Zylbersztejn (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 - Université de Lyon - UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Étienne] - Université de Lyon - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: We experimentally study the effect of the mode of digital communication on the emergence of swift trust in a principal-agent relationship. We consider three modes of communication that differ in the capacity to transmit nonverbal content: plain text, audio, and video. Communication is pre-play, one-way, and unrestricted, but its verbal content is homogenized across treatments. Overall, both audio and video messages have a positive (and similar) effect on trust as compared to plain text; however, the magnitude of these effects depends on the verbal content of agent's message (promise to act trustworthily vs. no such promise). In all conditions, we observe a positive e ect of the agent's promise on the principal's trust. We also report that trust in female principals is sensitive to the availability of nonverbal cues about interaction partners.
    Keywords: Digital communication,Trust,Hidden action,Nonverbal content,Principal-agent relationship,Promises
    Date: 2020
  17. By: Gaddis,Isis; Siwatu,Gbemisola Oseni; Palacios-Lopez,Amparo; Pieters,Janneke
    Abstract: This study examines recall bias in farm labor by conducting a randomized survey experiment in Ghana. Hours of farm labor obtained from a recall survey conducted at the end of the season are compared with data collected weekly throughout the season. The study finds that the recall method overestimates farm labor per person per plot by about 10 percent, controlling for observable differences at baseline. Recall bias in farm labor per person per plot is accounted for by the fact that households in the recall group report fewer marginal plots and farm workers, denoted here as listing bias. This listing bias also creates a countervailing effect on hours of farm labor at higher levels of aggregation, so that the recall method underestimates farm labor per plot and per household and overestimates the labor productivity of household-operated farms. Consistent with the notion that recall bias is linked to the cognitive burden of reporting on past events, the study finds that recall bias in farm labor has a strong educational gradient.
    Date: 2019–01–23
  18. By: Coibion, Olivier (University of Texas at Austin); Georgarakos, Dimitris (European Central Bank); Gorodnichenko, Yuriy (University of California, Berkeley); Weber, Michael (World Bank)
    Abstract: We compare the causal effects of forward guidance communication about future interest rates on households' expectations of inflation, mortgage rates, and unemployment to the effects of communication about future inflation in a randomized controlled trial using more than 25,000 U.S. individuals in the Nielsen Homescan panel. We elicit individuals' expectations and then provide 22 different forms of information regarding past, current and/or future inflation and interest rates. Information treatments about current and next year's interest rates have a strong effect on household expectations but treatments beyond one year do not have any additional impact on forecasts. Exogenous variation in inflation expectations transmits into other expectations. The richness of our survey allows us to better understand how individuals form expectations about macroeconomic variables jointly and the non-response to long-run forward guidance is consistent with models in which agents have constrained capacity to collect and process information.
    Keywords: expectations management, inflation expectations, surveys, communication, randomized controlled trial
    JEL: E31 C83 D84
    Date: 2020–02
  19. By: Chien-Yu Lai; John List; Anya Samek
    Abstract: The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) is a federal food assistance program that serves over 30 million children in the United States annually. Yet the impact of NSLP on nutritional intake may be limited because children frequently do not choose the healthier offerings or waste large portions of their meal. In this article, we study whether we can improve the impact of the NSLP on child food choice through low-cost nudges. We conduct a field experiment in a school lunchroom with 2500 children, evaluating the impact of informational prompts on milk choice and consumption over two weeks. We find that the prompts alone increase the proportion of children choosing and consuming the healthier white milk relative to sugar-sweetened chocolate milk from 20% in the control group to 30% in the treatment groups. Adding health or taste messaging to the prompt does not seem to make a difference. We survey students and find that most prompts affect perceived healthfulness of the milk, but not perceived taste. Finally, we find that the prompts are nearly as effective as a small nonmonetary incentive.
    Date: 2020
  20. By: Olivier Armantier (Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.); Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia; Federal Reserve Bank of New York)
    Abstract: In finance, auctions are often conducted to buy or sell simultaneously various assets with very different characteristics. These auctions raise a number of challenges that cannot always be addressed with standard auction designs. In this post, I discuss an alternative design?the ?reference price auction??and present evidence that it may dominate other methods often implemented in practice.
    Keywords: Auction design; procurement auctions; laboratory experiments
    JEL: G1
  21. By: Neva Bojovic (Kedge BS - Kedge Business School, IREGE - Institut de Recherche en Gestion et en Economie - USMB [Université de Savoie] [Université de Chambéry] - Université Savoie Mont Blanc); Valérie Sabatier (GEM - Grenoble Ecole de Management); Emmanuel Coblence (Institut Supérieur de Gestion Paris)
    Abstract: This qualitative study of a magazine publishing incumbent shows how organizational identity work can be triggered when organizational members engage in business model experimentation within the bounded social setting of experimental space. The study adds to the understanding of the strategy-identity nexus by expanding on the view of business models as cognitive tools to business models as tools for becoming and by understanding the role of experimental spaces as holding environments for organizational identity work. We show how an experimental space engages organizational members in experimental practices (e.g., cognitive, material, and experiential). As firms experiment with "what they do", organizational members progressively confront the existing organizational identity in the following ways: they engage in practices of organizational identity work by coping with the loss of the old identity, they play with possible organizational identities, and they allow new organizational identity aspirations to emerge. In these ways, experimental spaces act as an organizational identity work space that eventually enables organizational identity change. We identify two mechanisms (i.e., grounding and releasing) by which an organizational identity work space emerges and leads to the establishment of a renewed organizational identity.
    Keywords: organizational identity,organizational identity work space,experimental spaces,business model,business model experimentation,media industry
    Date: 2019
  22. By: Belton, Cameron; Robertson, Deirdre; Lunn, Pete
    Date: 2020
  23. By: Koriyama, Yukio; Ozkes, Ali
    Abstract: Cognitive hierarchy theory, a collection of structural models of non-equilibrium thinking, in which players' best responses rely on heterogeneous beliefs on others' strategies including naive behavior, proved powerful in explaining observations from a wide range of games. We introduce an inclusive cognitive hierarchy model, in which players do not rule out the possibility of facing opponents at their own thinking level. Our theoretical results show that inclusiveness is crucial for asymptotic properties of deviations from equilibrium behavior in expansive games. We show that the limiting behaviors are categorized in three distinct types: naive, Savage rational with inconsistent beliefs, and sophisticated. We test the model in a laboratory experiment of collective decision-making. The data suggests that inclusiveness is indispensable with regard to explanatory power of the models of hierarchical thinking.
    Keywords: cognitive hierarchy, collective decision-making, level-k model, strategic thinking
    Date: 2020–03–04
  24. By: Knauer,Heather Ashley; Jakiela,Pamela; Ozier,Owen; Aboud,Frances E; Fernald,Lia C.H.
    Abstract: Worldwide, 250 million children under five (43 percent) are not meeting their developmental potential because they lack adequate nutrition and cognitive stimulation in early childhood. Several parent support programs have shown significant benefits for children's development, but the programs are often expensive and resource intensive. The objective of this study was to test several variants of a potentially scalable, cost-effective intervention to increase cognitive stimulation by parents and improve emergent literacy skills in children. The intervention was a modified dialogic reading training program that used culturally and linguistically appropriate books adapted for a low-literacy population. The study used a cluster randomized controlled trial with four intervention arms and one control arm in a sample of caregivers (n = 357) and their 24- to 83- month-old children ages 24 to 83 months (n = 510) in rural Kenya. The first treatment group received storybooks, while the other treatment arms received storybooks paired with varying quantities of modified dialogic reading training for parents. The main effects of each arm of the trial were examined, and tests of heterogeneity were conducted to examine differential effects among children of illiterate versus literate caregivers. Parent training paired with the provision of culturally appropriate children?s books increased reading frequency and improved the quality of caregiver-child reading interactions among preschool-age children. Treatments involving training improved storybook-specific expressive vocabulary. The children of illiterate caregivers benefited at least as much as the children of literate caregivers. For some outcomes, the effects were comparable; for other outcomes, there were differentially larger effects for children of illiterate caregivers.
    Keywords: Educational Institutions&Facilities,Effective Schools and Teachers,Inequality,Adaptation to Climate Change,Educational Sciences
    Date: 2019–02–07
  25. By: Yan Chen; Peter Cramton; John List; Axel Ockenfels
    Abstract: We review past research and discuss future directions on how the vibrant research areas of market design and behavioral economics have influenced and will continue to impact the science and practice of management in both the private and public sectors. Using examples from various auction markets, reputation and feedback systems in online markets, matching markets in education, and labor markets, we demonstrate that combining market design theory, behavioral insights, and experimental methods can lead to fruitful implementation of superior market designs in practice.
    Date: 2020
  26. By: Özkes, Ali; Hanaki, Nobuyuki
    Abstract: We experimentally study the interaction of the effects of the strategic environment and com- munication on the observed levels of cooperation in two-person finitely repeated games with a Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibrium. We replicate previous findings that point to higher levels of tacit cooperation under strategic complementarity compared to strategic substitution. In our data, however, this is not due to differences in levels of reciprocity as suggested previously. Instead, we find that slow learning and noisy choices might drive this effect. When subjects are allowed to communicate in free-form online chat before making choices, cooperation levels increase significantly to the extent that the difference in the two strategic environments dis- appears. A machine-assisted natural language processing approach shows how the content of communication differs in the two strategic environments.
    Keywords: Communication, Cooperation, Reinforcement learning, Strategic environment, Structural topic modeling
    Date: 2020–03–04
  27. By: Gruener, Sven
    Abstract: False news stories constitute a problem for democracy since they make it hard to identify what the true state of the world is. The goal of this study is to experimentally explore who is good at identifying false news stories and to learn something about mechanisms to debunk false news stories. Both research fields are not new. However, the present study adds value to the literature by dealing with environmental topics (the bulk of existing studies on false news stories is about political topics in the US) and by analyzing news stories in the length of a small paragraph (former studies are primarily presented in the format of a Facebook post). Our main findings are: (i) Perceived familiarity increases the propensity to accept the stories as true. Actively open-minded thinking helps to distinguish between true and false. In contrast to earlier studies on false news stories, thinking deliberately (instead of spontaneously) does not help to prevent to fall for false news stories. Surprisingly, men performed slightly better than women in distinguishing between false and true. (ii) By repeating false news stories, subjects are more likely to adequately identify them later. Thus, there is no evidence for a familiarity backfire effect. However, repeating false news stories results in a decreased ability to adequately identify correct messages. A somewhat reverse, but weaker effect seems to occur when true stories are repeated: the correct identification of correct news stories is more successful, but the opposite holds for the identification of false news stories. Detailed explanations of why the false stories contain false content increases the correct identification of false news stories, but the ability to correctly identify correct news stories is detrimental.
    Date: 2020–03–02
  28. By: Amaro Da Costa Luz Carneiro,Pedro Manuel; Galasso,Emanuela; Lopez Garcia,Italo Xavier; Bedregal,Paula; Cordero,Miguel
    Abstract: This paper experimentally evaluates a large-scale and low-cost parenting program targeting poor families in Chile. Households in 162 public health centers were randomly assigned to three groups: a control group, a second group that was offered eight weekly group parenting sessions, and a third group that was offered the same eight group sessions plus two sessions of guided interactions between parents and children focused on responsive play and dialogic reading. Three years after the end of the intervention, the receptive vocabulary and the socio-emotional development of children of families participating in either of the treatment arms improved (by 0.43 and 0.54 standard deviation, respectively) relative to children of nonparticipating families. There were no statistically detectable impacts on other types of skills. The treatments also led to improvements in home environments and parenting behaviors of comparable magnitudes, which far outlasted the short duration of the intervention. A simple mediation analysis suggests that up to 13 percent of treatment impacts on language, and up to 36 percent of impacts on child socio-emotional development, can be attributed to changes in the home environment, as well as in nurturing and discipline parenting behaviors.
    Keywords: Health Care Services Industry,Reproductive Health,Early Childhood Development,Nutrition,Early Child and Children's Health,Children and Youth,Public Health Promotion,Social Protections&Assistance
    Date: 2019–02–14
  29. By: Sabiou M. Inoua (Economic Science Institute, Chapman University); Vernon L. Smith (Economic Science Institute, Chapman University)
    Abstract: This paper introduces and formalizes the classical view on supply and demand, which, we argue, has an integrity independent and distinct from the neoclassical theory. Demand and supply, before the marginal revolution, are defined not by an unobservable criterion such as a utility function, but by an observable monetary variable, the reservation price: the buyer’s (maximum) willingness to pay (WTP) value (a potential price) and the seller’s (minimum) willingness to accept (WTA) value (a potential price) at the marketplace. Market demand and supply are the cumulative distribution of the buyers’ and sellers’ reservation prices, respectively. This WTP WTA classical view of supply and demand formed the means whereby market participants were motivated in experimental economics although experimentalists (trained in neoclassical economics) were not cognizant of their link to the past. On this foundation was erected a vast literature on the rules of trading for a host of institutions, modern and ancient. This paper documents textually this reappraisal of classical economics and then formalizes it mathematically. A follow-up paper will articulate a theory of market price formation rooted in this classical view on supply and demand and in experimental findings on market behavior.
    Keywords: History of Economic Thought; Methodology of Economics; Microeconomic Theory; Experimental Economics
    JEL: B C D
    Date: 2020
  30. By: Peter Christensen; Ignacio Sarmiento-Barbieri; Christopher Timmins
    Abstract: Local pollution exposures disproportionately impact minority households, but the root causes remain unclear. This study conducts a correspondence experiment on a major online housing platform to test whether housing discrimination constrains minority access to housing options in markets with significant sources of airborne chemical toxics. We find that renters with African American or Hispanic/LatinX names are 41% less likely than renters with White names to receive responses for properties in low exposure locations. We find no evidence of discriminatory constraints in high exposure locations, indicating that discrimination increases relative access to housing choices at elevated exposure risk.
    JEL: Q51 Q53 R31
    Date: 2020–02
  31. By: Alvi, Muzna Fatima; Ward, Patrick S.; Makhija, Simrin; Spielman, David J.
    Abstract: We use priming, a concept popular in social psychology, to study the effect of identity salience on aspirations for self and children as part of an impact evaluation in Odisha, India. We measure the effect of an individual’s genderand caste-identity salience on improving aspirations for themselves and for their children’s future profession and education. We find that when women are primed on gender, they exhibit higher aspirations for their daughters. Similarly, low-caste women primed on caste are more aspirational for their daughters. We do not find similar results for men. The effect of caste priming is more apparent in areas where significant ethnic heterogeneity exists and muted in ethnically homogenous areas. We find that aspirations for boys are already very high, thus priming has no effect on aspirations for sons.
    Keywords: INDIA, SOUTH ASIA, ASIA, gender, caste systems, priming, psychology, aspiration, children, caste-identity, social psychology,
    Date: 2019
  32. By: Andor, Mark Andreas; Frondel, Manuel; Horvath, Marco
    Abstract: Based on hypothetical responses originating from a large-scale survey among about 6,000 German households, this study investigates the discrepancy in willingness-to-pay (WTP) estimates for green electricity across single-binary-choice and open-ended valuation formats. Recognizing that respondents self-select into two groups distinguished by their belief in their answers' consequences for policy making, we employ a switching regression model that accounts for the potential endogeneity of respondents' belief in consequences and, hence, biases from sample selectivity. Contrasting with the received literature, we find WTP bids that tend to be higher among those respondents who obtained questions in the openended format, rather than single-binary-choice questions. This difference substantially shrinks, however, when focusing on individuals who perceive the survey as politically consequential.
    Keywords: Elicitation format,contingent valuation,consequentialism
    JEL: D03 D12 Q48 Q50 H41
    Date: 2020
  33. By: Brice Corgnet (emlyon business school, 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 - Université de Lyon - UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Étienne] - Université de Lyon - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Simon Gaechter (UON - University of Nottingham, UK); Roberto Hernán González (CEREN - Centre de Recherche sur l'ENtreprise [Dijon] - BSB - Burgundy School of Business (BSB) - Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Dijon Bourgogne (ESC), BSB - Burgundy School of Business (BSB) - Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Dijon Bourgogne (ESC), UBFC - Université Bourgogne Franche-Comté [COMUE])
    Abstract: People are generally assumed to shy away from activities generating stochastic rewards, thus requiring extra compensation for handling any additional risk. In contrast with this view, neurosci-ence research with animals has shown that stochastic rewards may act as a powerful motivator. Applying these ideas to the study of work addiction in humans, and using a new experimental paradigm, we demonstrate how stochastic rewards may lead people to continue working on a repetitive and effortful task even after monetary compensation becomes saliently negligible. In line with our hypotheses, we show that persistence on the work task is especially pronounced when the entropy of stochastic rewards is high, which is also when the work task generates more stress to participants. We discuss the economic and managerial implications of our findings.
    Keywords: Incentives,Work Addiction,Occupational Health,Experiments
    Date: 2020
  34. By: Lunn, Pete; Belton, Cameron; Lavin, Ciarán; McGowan, Féidhlim; Timmons, Shane; Robertson, Deirdre
    Date: 2020

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.