nep-exp New Economics Papers
on Experimental Economics
Issue of 2020‒06‒08
thirty-two papers chosen by

  1. Risk Preferences at the Time of COVID-19: An Experiment with Professional Traders and Students By Marco Angrisani; Marco Cipriani; Antonio Guarino; Ryan Kendall; Julen Ortiz de Zarate Pina
  2. Innovation and Communication Media in Virtual Teams – An Experimental Study By Grözinger, Nicola; Irlenbusch, Bernd; Laske, Katharina; Schröder, Marina
  3. Experimental effects of institutionalizing co-determination by a procedurally fair bidding rule By Federica Alberti; Werner Güth; Kei Tsutsui
  4. Self-Selection into Corruption: Evidence from the Lab By Pablo Brassiolo; Ricardo Estrada; Gustavo Fajardo; Juan F. Vargas
  5. Positive framing does not solve the tragedy of the commons By Isaksen, Elisabeth Thuestad; Brekke, Kjell Arne; Richter, Andries
  6. Responding to (Un)Reasonable Requests by an Authority By Vittorio Pelligra; Tommaso Reggiani; Daniel John Zizzo
  7. The Forward Premium in Electricity Markets: An Experimental Study By Silvester Van Koten
  8. The Influence of Ambient Temperature on Social Perception and Social Behavior By Jan S. Krause; Gerrit Nanninga; Patrick Ring; Ulrich Schmidt; Daniel Schunk
  9. Collaboration, Alphabetical Order and Gender Discrimination – Evidence from the Lab By Wiborg, Vegard Sjurseike; Brekke, Kjell Arne; Nyborg, Karine
  10. Other-Regarding Preferences and Giving Decision in Risky Environments: Experimental Evidence By Mickaël Beaud; Mathieu Lefebvre; Julie Rosaz
  11. Financial Education Affects Financial Knowledge and Downstream Behaviors By Kaiser, Tim; Lusardi, Annamaria; Menkhoff, Lukas; Urban, Carly
  12. Outcomes with asymmetric payoffs: The case of the Soviet Football League By J. James Reade
  13. How do individuals behave in the intergenerational sustainability dilemma? A strategy method experiment By Mostafa Shahen; Koji Kotani; Tatsuyoshi Saijo
  14. Moral incentives in credit card debt repayment: evidence from a field experiment By Bursztyn, Leonardo; Fiorin, Stefano; Gottlieb, Daniel; Kanz, Martin
  15. Research Registries: Facts, Myths, and Possible Improvements By Eliot Abrams; Jonathan Libgober; John List
  16. Empowering College Students through Community Engagement: Experimental Evidence from Peru By Marcos Agurto; Sandra Buzinsky; Fernando Fernandez; Javier Torres
  17. Cooperation and cognition gaps for salinity: A field experiment of information provision By Mst Asma Khatun; Shibly Shahrier; Koji Kotani
  18. Traffic Congestion, Transportation Policies, and the Performance of First Responders By Daniel A. Brent; Louis-Philippe Beland
  19. Increasing Employment Through the Partial Release of Information By Surajeet Chakravarty; Todd R. Kaplan; Luke Lindsay
  20. Prosocial Behavior in the Time of COVID-19: The Effect of Private and Public Role Models By Abel, Martin; Brown, Willa
  21. Team Players: How Social Skills Improve Group Performance By Ben Weidmann; David J. Deming
  22. Digital piracy and the perception of price fairness. Evidence from a field experiment By Michal Krawczyk; Joanna Tyrowicz; Anna Kukla-Gryz
  23. Intellectual property reform in the laboratory By Benslimane, I.; Crosetto, P.; Magni-Berton, R.; Varaine, S.
  24. When Goal-Setting Forges Ahead but Stops Short By Islam, Asadul; Kwon, Sungoh; Masood, Eema; Prakash, Nishith; Sabarwal, Shwetlena; Saraswat, Deepak
  25. It's Just Not Cricket: The Uncontested Toss and the Gentleman's Game By Sarah Jewell; J. James Reade; Carl Singleton
  26. The Reference Point Bias in Judging Cheaters By Sophie Clot; Gilles Grolleau; Lisette Ibanez
  27. Work meaning and labor supply By Iris Kesternich; Heiner Schumacher; Bettina Siflinger; Stefan Schwarz
  28. Bootstrap Inference for Quantile Treatment Effects in Randomized Experiments with Matched Pairs By Jiang, Liang; Liu, Xiaobin; Zhang, Yichong
  29. Sleep Restriction Increases Coordination Failure By Castillo, Marco; Dickinson, David L.
  30. Team Collective Intelligence: Developing and testing a digital team intervention for knowledge integration By Runsten, Philip; Werr, Andreas
  31. Is climate change induced by humans? The impact of the gap in perceptions on cooperation By Junichi Hirose; Koji Kotani; Yoshinori Nakagawa
  32. Increasing the adoption of conservation agriculture: A framed field experiment in Northern Ghana By Ambler, Kate; de Brauw, Alan; Murphy, Mike

  1. By: Marco Angrisani; Marco Cipriani; Antonio Guarino; Ryan Kendall; Julen Ortiz de Zarate Pina
    Abstract: We study whether the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted risk preferences, comparing the results of experiments conducted before and during the outbreak. In each experiment, we elicit risk preferences from two sample groups: professional traders and undergraduate students. We find that, on average, risk preferences have remained constant for both pools of participants. Our results suggest that the increases in risk premia observed during the pandemic are not due to changes in risk appetite; rather, they are solely due to a change in beliefs by market participants. The findings of our paper support the traditional view that, at least on average, risk preferences are not affected by economic or social circumstances.
    Keywords: risk aversion; financial markets professional; COVID-19; experimental economics
    JEL: D81 D91 N0
    Date: 2020–05–01
  2. By: Grözinger, Nicola (University of Cologne); Irlenbusch, Bernd (University of Cologne); Laske, Katharina (University of Cologne); Schröder, Marina (Hannan University)
    Abstract: In a novel real-effort setting, we experimentally study the effects of different communication media on creative performance in a collaborative tasks. We find that creative performance significantly decreases when group members communicate via chat instead of face-to-face. However, we find no significant difference between performances of groups that communicate via video conferences as compared to face-to-face. Thus, we provide evidence that barriers to creativity in virtual teams can be mitigated by real-time video conference communication.
    Keywords: creativity, communication, laboratory experiment, real-effort, complex problem solving, innovation
    JEL: C91 J30 M52 O30
    Date: 2020–05
  3. By: Federica Alberti (University of Portsmouth); Werner Güth (LUISS Guido Carli and Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods); Kei Tsutsui (University of Bath)
    Abstract: We experimentally investigate corporate governance of a co-determined firm. The experimental setup confronts the firm’s manager with three employees as stakeholders. There are two investment opportunities, each of which could affect the stakeholders either positively or negatively. First, the manager states his or her demand of the total value of each investment. Then the three stakeholders, knowing the manager’s demands, state their claims via bidding. The bidding rule is procedurally fair by treating all three stakeholders equally as long as stakeholders truthfully state their own values, but offers underbidding incentives. We find that most stakeholder-participants do underbid. The total bids are not significantly different from the managers’ claims. Contrary to game theoretical prediction, manager-participants demand a fair share of the value rather than almost the entire investment value.
    Keywords: corporate management, co-determination, procedural fairness, laboratory experiments
    JEL: J52 J54 C92
    Date: 2020–05–29
  4. By: Pablo Brassiolo; Ricardo Estrada; Gustavo Fajardo; Juan F. Vargas
    Abstract: We study whether opportunities to extract rents in a job affect the type of individuals who are attracted to it in terms of their underlying integrity. We do so in a laboratory experiment in which participants choose between two contracts that involve different tasks. We experimentally introduce the possibility of graft in one of them and study the sorting of subjects across contracts based on an incentivized measure of honesty. We find that the corruptible contract changes the composition of subjects because it attracts the most dishonest individuals and repels the most honest ones. In addition, we observe extensive graft when the opportunity is available. We introduce a double randomization strategy to disentangle the extent of which stealing responds to the aforementioned negative selection or to pure incentives (net of selection). We find that, in this setting, selection is the main driver of graft. Our results have clear policy implications to curb corruption.
    Keywords: Corruption, selection, rent extraction opportunities, personnel economics
    JEL: C91 D73 M5
    Date: 2020–05–28
  5. By: Isaksen, Elisabeth Thuestad; Brekke, Kjell Arne; Richter, Andries
    Abstract: We investigate whether positive framing increases cooperation in three social dilemmas with slightly different properties: a linear public goods (PG) game, a non-linear PG game, and a common pool resource (CPR) game. Results from our laboratory experiments show that contributions to a linear PG are higher if the externality is framed positively, rather than negatively, corroborating earlier findings by Andreoni (1995). By contrast, we find no such framing effects in the non-linear PG game or the CPR game. In these games, the best response in the material payoffs is to contribute less if others contribute more, counteracting effects of pro-social preferences. Positive framing therefore does not help to solve the tragedy of the commons.
    JEL: C72 C92 D70
    Date: 2019–05–01
  6. By: Vittorio Pelligra (University of Cagliari); Tommaso Reggiani (Cardiff University, Masaryk University & IZA); Daniel John Zizzo (University of Queensland)
    Abstract: We consider the notions of static and dynamic reasonableness of requests by an authority in a trust game experiment. The authority, modelled as the experimenter, systematically varies the experimental norm of what is expected from trustees to return to trustors, both in terms of the level of each request and in terms of the sequence of the requests. Static reasonableness matters in a self-biased way, in the sense that low requests justify returning less, but high requests tend to be ignored. Dynamic reasonableness also matters, in the sense that, if requests keep increasing, trustees return less compared to the same requests presented in random or decreasing order. Requests never systematically increase trustworthiness but may decrease it.
    Keywords: trust, trustworthiness, authority, reasonableness, moral wiggle room, moral licensing
    JEL: C91 D01 D03 D63
    Date: 2020–05–19
  7. By: Silvester Van Koten
    Abstract: An economic laboratory experiment is used to test the validity of Bessembinder and Lemmon's (2002) seminal risk premium theory. The theory predicts that forward premia in electricity markets are determined by the statistical properties of demand. The existing empirical evidence is mixed, possibly as a result of the lack of observability of key variables. Specifically, the experiment tests if an increase in the variance of demand makes the forward premia more negative for specific parameters and implementation details. The experimental results corroborate the theoretical predictions.
    Keywords: forward premia; electricity markets; economic experiments;
    JEL: C92 G13 L94 Q47
    Date: 2020–05
  8. By: Jan S. Krause (University of Kiel); Gerrit Nanninga (University of Kiel); Patrick Ring (University of Kiel); Ulrich Schmidt (University of Kiel); Daniel Schunk (Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz)
    Abstract: The literature suggests that human perception and behavior vary with physical temperature. We provide an experimental test of how different ambient temperature conditions impact social behavior and social perception: Subjects went through a series of tasks measuring various aspects of social behavior and perception under three temperature conditions (cold vs. optimal vs. warm). Despite well-established findings on temperature effects, our data suggest that physical temperature has no relevant influence on social behavior and social perception. We corroborate our finding of a null effect by the use of equivalence testing and provide a discussion in the light of recent failed replication attempts in this field of research.
    Keywords: social perception, ambient temperature, social preference, equivalence testing, cooperation, warmth
    JEL: C90 D01 D90 D91
    Date: 2020–05–21
  9. By: Wiborg, Vegard Sjurseike (University of Oslo); Brekke, Kjell Arne (University of Oslo); Nyborg, Karine (University of Oslo)
    Abstract: If individual abilities are imperfectly observable, statistical discrimination may affect hiring decisions. In our lab experiment, pairs of subjects solve simple mathematical problems. Subjects then hire others to perform similar tasks. Before choosing whom to hire, they receive information about the past scores of pairs, not of individuals. We vary the observability of individuals' abilities by ordering pair members either according to performance, or alphabetically by nickname. We find no evidence of gender discrimination in either treatment, however, possibly indicating that gender stereotypes are of limited importance in the context of our study.
    Keywords: discrimination, collaboration, alphabetic, gender
    JEL: C91 J71 A13 D83
    Date: 2020–05
  10. By: Mickaël Beaud (CEE-M - Centre d'Economie de l'Environnement - Montpellier - FRE2010 - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - UM - Université de Montpellier - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - Montpellier SupAgro - Institut national d’études supérieures agronomiques de Montpellier); Mathieu Lefebvre (BETA - Bureau d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UL - Université de Lorraine - UNISTRA - Université de Strasbourg); Julie Rosaz (GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - Université de Lyon - UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Étienne] - UCBL - Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1 - Université de Lyon - UL2 - Université Lumière - Lyon 2 - ENS Lyon - École normale supérieure - Lyon)
    Abstract: This paper investigates if and how other-regarding preferences governing giving decisions in dictator games are affected in risky environments in which the payoff of the recipient is random. We demonstrate that, whenever the risk is actuarially neutral, the donation of dictators with a purely ex post view of fairness should, in general, be affected by the riskyness of the recipient's payoff, while dictators with a purely ex ante view should not be. Our experimental data give weak empirical support to the purely ex post view of fairness.
    Keywords: ex ante and ex post views of fairness,impure altruism,Laboratory experiments dictator games,background risk,other-regarding preferences,Inequality aversion
    Date: 2018–09–11
  11. By: Kaiser, Tim (DIW Berlin); Lusardi, Annamaria (Dartmouth College); Menkhoff, Lukas (Leibniz University of Hannover); Urban, Carly (Montana State University)
    Abstract: We study the rapidly growing literature on the causal effects of financial education programs in a meta-analysis of 76 randomized experiments with a total sample size of over 160,000 individuals. The evidence shows that financial education programs have, on average, positive causal treatment effects on financial knowledge and downstream financial behaviors. Treatment effects are economically meaningful in size, similar to those realized by educational interventions in other domains and are at least three times as large as the average effect documented in earlier work. These results are robust to the method used, restricting the sample to papers published in top economics journals, including only studies with adequate power, and accounting for publication selection bias in the literature. We conclude with a discussion of the cost-effectiveness of financial education interventions.
    Keywords: financial literacy, financial education, financial behavior, RCT, metaanalysis
    JEL: D14 I21
    Date: 2020–04
  12. By: J. James Reade (Department of Economics, University of Reading)
    Abstract: Economists are interested in outcomes - the results of decisions made regarding scarce resources by agents acting within environments that they must take as given. Sport, and football in particular, offers insight into a wide range of measurable outcomes, and provides vast amounts of data on the decision making that surrounded such outcomes. Usually in the context of individual footballing contexts, the immediate rewards are symmetric in that they apply equally to each team: a team that wins will progress in a competition, or in a league structure will gain three points, and a single point if the match is drawn. Despite this, there have been variations over the years in terms of the rewards on offer, usually as an attempt to encourage more exciting play, to discourage attempts at cheating, and thus to attract more spectator demand. Indeed, it is only since the 1980s that three points for a win became commonplace across football, and before that a range of different incentive systems have been experimented with. In France in the 1970s, bonus points were offered for teams scoring three or more goals. In other sports, bonus points are regularly awarded for attacking play. In this paper we investigate a particular experiment in Soviet football in the late 1970s and 1980s. In response to an increasing number of drawn outcomes, and concerns regarding corruption, a draw limit was introduced. Teams that had already drawn a particular number of matches in a given season would not gain a point for drawing any further matches. This led to an asymmetry in rewards, in particular if a team that had reached the draw limit faced a team that had not. We investigate whether this system had any impact on match outcomes. We find some evidence that it reduced the number of goals, and that as teams neared and exceeded the draw limit, they draw fewer matches. The experiment was, nonetheless, abandoned in 1988.
    Keywords: Tournamentdesign, contests, sport
    JEL: O1 C20 L83
    Date: 2020–06–01
  13. By: Mostafa Shahen (School of Economics and Management, Kochi University of Technology); Koji Kotani (School of Economics and Management, Kochi University of Technology); Tatsuyoshi Saijo (Research Institute for Future Design, Kochi University of Technology)
    Abstract: The intergenerational sustainability dilemma (ISD) is a situation where the current generation chooses to maximize (sacrifice) its own benefits without (for) considering future generations, compromising (maintaining) intergenerational sustainability (IS) (Kamijo et al., 2017, Shahrier et al., 2017b). Despite its importance, little is known about how individuals behave under the ISD and affect IS.We design a one-person ISD game (ISDG) with a strategy method in which a queue of individuals is organized as a generational sequence. Each individual is asked to choose, in 36 situations, either (i) an unsustainable option that yields a payoff, X, at an irreversible cost to future generations, D, or (ii) a sustainable option that yields a payoff, (X - D), that imposes no cost on future generations; in each situation, the histories of previous generations’ choices and the payoff structures of X & D are varied. As a potential resolution for the ISD, we institute a future ahead and back (FAB) mechanism, whereby each individual is asked, first, to take the position of the next generation and request what she wants the current generation to choose and, second, to make the actual decision from the original position. Our results show that individuals are likely to choose the unsustainable option when the proportion of previous generations that chose the unsustainable option is high or when X/D (the IS index) is low. However, the FAB treatment is effective at preventing individuals from choosing the unsustainable option even in such situations. Overall, the results suggest that some new institutions, such as FAB mechanisms, which induce people to take the standpoint of future generations, may be necessary to avoid intergenerational unsustainability, especially when IS default risk becomes high.
    Keywords: Intergenerational sustainability dilemma, future ahead and back mechanism, intergenerational sustainability index
    Date: 2020–05
  14. By: Bursztyn, Leonardo; Fiorin, Stefano; Gottlieb, Daniel; Kanz, Martin
    Abstract: We study the role of morality in debt repayment, using an experiment with the credit card customers of a large Islamic bank in Indonesia. In our main treatment, clients receive a text message stating that \non-repayment of debts by someone who is able to repay is an injustice." This moral appeal decreases delinquency by 4.4 percentage points from a baseline of 66 percent, and reduces default among customers with the highest ex-ante credit risk. Additional treatments help benchmark the effects against direct financial incentives, and rule out competing explanations, such as reminder effects, priming religion, and provision of new information.
    Keywords: credit cards; household finance; religion; moral suasion
    JEL: D14 G20 G21 Z10 Z12
    Date: 2019–08
  15. By: Eliot Abrams; Jonathan Libgober; John List
    Abstract: The past few decades have ushered in an experimental revolution in economics whereby scholars are now much more likely to generate their own data. While there are virtues associated with this movement, there are concomitant difficulties. Several scientific disciplines, including economics, have launched research registries in an effort to attenuate key inferential issues. This study assesses registries both empirically and theoretically, with a special focus on the AEA registry. We find that over 90% of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) in economics do not register, only 50% of the RCTs that register do so before the intervention begins, and the majority of these preregistrations are not detailed enough to significantly aid inference. Our empirical analysis further shows that using other scientific registries as aspirational examples is misguided, as their perceived success in tackling the main issues is largely a myth. In light of these facts, we advance a simple economic model to explore potential improvements. A key insight from the model is that removal of the (current) option to register completed RCTs could increase the fraction of trials that register. We also argue that linking IRB applications to registrations could further increase registry effectiveness.
    Date: 2020
  16. By: Marcos Agurto (Universidad de Piura); Sandra Buzinsky (Universidad de Piura); Fernando Fernandez (Universidad de Piura); Javier Torres (Universidad del Pacífico)
    Abstract: We exploit a randomized control trial involving 131 fellows of a higher education scholarship program, who study at the same university. Half of the students were randomly assigned to a youth community engagement initiative and acted as academic ambassadors in the diffusion of an electronic wallet in their local communities. They received training on leadership, teamwork and financial literacy. Also, their role as agents of change in their communities was constantly emphasized. They later delivered training and information sessions about the new electronic wallet to members of their local communities. Treated female students show positive effects regarding attitudes of empowerment, self-efficacy, motivation, and community engagement. On average, treated female students report being more appreciated by their community members, have a stronger sense of commitment towards their community, and report higher levels of self-efficacy. They also experience improved academic performance, measured in GPA and academic credits successfully completed. We do not find the same effects for treated male students.
    Keywords: Youth Empowerment, College Academic Performance, Community Engagement, Beca 18, Peru
    JEL: H52 I25 I28 J16
    Date: 2020–05
  17. By: Mst Asma Khatun (School of Economics and Management, Kochi University of Technology); Shibly Shahrier (Research Institute for Humanity and Nature, Kyoto); Koji Kotani (School of Economics and Management, Kochi University of Technology)
    Abstract: Salinity along with climate change has devastating effects on people’s life, and thus, adaptation & mitigation strategies are needed to cope with its risks. Literature establishes an existence of cooperation & cognition gaps due to informational and residential differences that make the strategies’ implementation difficult. While little is known about how such gaps can be reduced, we hypothesize that information provision about salinity through some lecture is effective at reducing cooperation gaps among people by influencing their cognition in urban and rural areas. We conduct a survey experiment, collecting data on donations, prosociality, cognitive and sociodemographic factors of 900 subjects from one urban and two rural areas in Bangladesh. A climate donation game is instituted to measure cooperation among people where they are asked to donate to salinity risk reduction with or without the information provision. The analysis shows that people who have prosocial orientation and perception of human-induced climate change donate more than do those who do not, and urban people tend to donate less than do rural people. However, urban people are identified to increase their donations by receiving the information provision much more than do rural people. These results can be interpreted that urban people become more cooperative in response to the lecture than do rural people, and cooperation gaps become smaller due to a change in cognition via information provision. Overall, the results demonstrate that informational and education programs for salinity and climate change shall be effective and prioritized especially in urban areas to enhance cooperation for SDGs through affecting people’s cognition.
    Keywords: Salinity, cooperation, cognition, information provision
    Date: 2020–06
  18. By: Daniel A. Brent (Department of Agricultural Economics, Sociology, and Education, Pennsylvania State University); Louis-Philippe Beland (Department of Economics, Carleton University)
    Abstract: Traffic congestion is a growing problem in urbanizing economies that results in lost time, health problems from pollution, and contributes to the accumulation of greenhouse gas emissions. We examine a new external cost of traffic by estimating the relationship between traffic congestion and emergency response times. Matching traffic data at a fine spatial and temporal scale to incident report data from fire departments in California allows us to assign traffic immediately preceding an emergency. Our results show that traffic slows down fire trucks arriving at the scene of an emergency and increases the average monetary damages from fires. The effects are highly nonlinear; increases in response time are primarily due to traffic in the right tail of the traffic distribution. We document an additional externality of traffic congestion and highlight the negative effect of traffic on a critical public good.
    Keywords: Traffic, Public Goods, Externalities, Emergency Response Times
    JEL: R41 R42 R48 H41 Q50
    Date: 2020–05–20
  19. By: Surajeet Chakravarty (University of Exeter); Todd R. Kaplan (University of Exeter); Luke Lindsay (University of Exeter)
    Abstract: CSkills and ability affect the likelihood of a worker getting hired. We ask if keeping these attributes fixed, can we increase employment by changing the information employers receive about potential workers. We use labora- tory experiments with subjects as employers and agencies to test how differ- ent market designs can result in different information being released about workers which in turn affects the number hired. We find that full informa- tion about workers leads to high employer profits. Revealing coarser and not necessarily verifiable information about workers increases employment albeit at the expense of the employersÕ profits and average skill of workers employed.
    Keywords: Weather, Job placements, lab experiments, institutions, information design, unemployment
    JEL: C9 D82 J6
    Date: 2020
  20. By: Abel, Martin (Middlebury College); Brown, Willa
    Abstract: In public good provision and other collective action problems, people are uncertain about how to balance self-interest and prosociality. Actions of others may inform this decision. We conduct an experiment to test the effect of watching private citizens and public officials acting in ways that either increase or decrease the spread of the coronavirus. For private role models, positive examples lead to a 34% increase in donations to the CDC Emergency Fund and a 20% increase in learning about COVID-19-related volunteering compared to negative examples. For public role models these effects are reversed. Negative examples lead to a 29% and 53% increase in donations and volunteering, respectively. Results are consistent with the Norm Activation Model: positive private role models lead to more prosocial behavior because they increase norms of trust, while negative public role models increase a sense of responsibility among individuals which convinces them to act more prosocially.
    Keywords: COVID-19, role models, public goods, prosociality
    JEL: H41 I21 K30 O15
    Date: 2020–05
  21. By: Ben Weidmann; David J. Deming
    Abstract: Most jobs require teamwork. Are some people good team players? In this paper we design and test a new method for identifying individual contributions to group performance. We randomly assign people to multiple teams and predict team performance based on previously assessed individual skills. Some people consistently cause their group to exceed its predicted performance. We call these individuals “team players”. Team players score significantly higher on a well-established measure of social intelligence, but do not differ across a variety of other dimensions, including IQ, personality, education and gender. Social skills – defined as a single latent factor that combines social intelligence scores with the team player effect – improve group performance about as much as IQ. We find suggestive evidence that team players increase effort among teammates.
    JEL: J01
    Date: 2020–05
  22. By: Michal Krawczyk (University of Warsaw; Group for Research in Applied Economics (GRAPE)); Joanna Tyrowicz (Group for Research in Applied Economics (GRAPE); University of Warsaw; Institut für Arbeitsrecht und Arbeitsbeziehungen in der Europäischen Union (IAAEU); Institute of Labor Economics (IZA)); Anna Kukla-Gryz (University of Warsaw)
    Abstract: We study a relationship between perceived price fairness and digital piracy. In a large-scale field experiment on customers of a leading ebook store we employ the Bayesian Truth Serum to elicit the information on acquiring books from unauthorized sources (often referred to as digital piracy). We provide empirical evidence in support of the conjecture that willingness to ‘pirate’ is associated with having experienced subjective overpricing. We propose and verify the relevance of two mechanisms behind this link: reactance theory and moral cleansing/licensing. The results indicate that pricing policy perceived as fair may reduce the scope for digital piracy.
    Keywords: unauthorized download; digital piracy; fair price; online sales; Bayesian Truth Serum
    JEL: P31 D24 O47
    Date: 2019
  23. By: Benslimane, I.; Crosetto, P.; Magni-Berton, R.; Varaine, S.
    Abstract: This study attempts to experimentally capture the effects of democratic reform of intellectual property (IP) and measure how a vote "against IP" can disappoint the most talented innovators and reduce their creativity. Contrary to expectations, the results show that such a vote increases overall creativity. Actually, the most talented innovators do not vote in favor of IP. Rather, those who vote in favor of IP are those who benefit relatively more from royalties. Surprisingly, no correlation is found between these two populations: the IP in our experiment seems not to reward the best players, but the players choosing an ’autarkic’ strategy of relying on their own creationsand forego cross-fertilization with other players. These are not particularly brilliant players thatopt for a rent-seeking strategy that maximises gainsfromthe IP systemitself. There are plausible arguments to argue that this result is at least partly valid in the real world, especially for complexand highly sequential innovations where it has been proven that patent trolls and anti-competitivestrategies are important. These findings lead us not to recommend IP constitutional protections,because there are no major "tyranny from the majority" concerns.
    JEL: O34 D90 D72
    Date: 2020
  24. By: Islam, Asadul (Monash University); Kwon, Sungoh (University of Connecticut); Masood, Eema (World Bank); Prakash, Nishith (University of Connecticut); Sabarwal, Shwetlena (World Bank); Saraswat, Deepak (University of Connecticut)
    Abstract: In this study, we use at scale randomized control trial among 18,000 secondary students in 181 schools in Tanzania (Zanzibar) to examine the effects of personal best goal-settings on students' academic performance. We also offer non-financial rewards to students to meet the goals they set. We find that goal-setting has a significant positive impact on student time use, study effort, and self-discipline. However, we do not find any significant impact of goalsetting on test scores. We find that, this could be partially because about 2/3rd of students do not set realistic goals. Third, we find weaker results on time use, study effort, and discipline when we combine goal-setting with non-financial rewards, suggesting that typing goal-setting to extrinsic incentives could weaken its impact. We also find that female students improved on outcomes much more than male students and that students coming from relatively weaker socio-economic backgrounds improved more than their counterparts.
    Keywords: goal-setting, recognition rewards, student performance, Zanzibar
    JEL: D9 I20 I25 O15 O55
    Date: 2020–04
  25. By: Sarah Jewell (Department of Economics, University of Reading); J. James Reade (Department of Economics, University of Reading); Carl Singleton (Department of Economics, University of Reading)
    Abstract: Cricket offers a wealth of opportunity and potential insights for economists and other researchers. Focusing on the oldest domestic cricket competition, the English County Championship, we discuss issues of demand, home advantage, competitive balance and the importance of winning the pre-match coin toss to determine the playing order. Despite cricket being generally regarded as a sport for traditionalists, the County Championship is remarkable in how often the rule makers have altered its format. We study one recent major change, the replacement of the mandatory pre-match coin toss with an uncontested one, whereby the away team could decide whether to bowl first or face a toss to bat instead. In theory, this ought to have reduced home advantage, made the toss matter more when it was contested, and incentivised teams to prepare better pitches leading to longer matches. We found no evidence of the first or the last of these effects, but matches did become more predictable once the toss was decided. This suggests that the rule makers were right to abandon this experimental change after only four seasons.
    Keywords: Home advantage, First-mover advantage, Decision making under uncertainty, Coin toss, County Championship, Fist-class cricket
    JEL: D81 L83 Z22
    Date: 2020–05–18
  26. By: Sophie Clot (Department of Economics, University of Reading); Gilles Grolleau (Centre d'Économie de l'Environnement - Montpellier (CEE-M), Faculté de sciences économiques,Université de Montpellier I); Lisette Ibanez (Centre d'Économie de l'Environnement - Montpellier (CEE-M), Faculté de sciences économiques,Université de Montpellier I)
    Abstract: Do observers judge differently a wrongdoer when s/he does not exploit the situation to its maximum extent? Using a social intuitionist perspective and taking into account the reference point bias, we hypothesize that people will judge less severely a moral wrongdoing when the situation is not exploited to its fullest extent. Thanks to an experimental survey in France, we examine whether various wrongdoings performed in the business realm (overcharging travel expenses, overstating work hours, pollution) are judged less severely when differing reference points are suggested: (i) no explicit reference point is mentioned, (ii) the maximum extent is reached, (iii) the maximum extent is not reached. Our findings support that participants judge less severely a wrongdoer, when it is indicated that s/he has not exploited the situation to its fullest extent. In addition of maintaining their self-concepts, our findings suggest that partial cheaters can also emphasize their self-restraint to mitigate judgement and punishment if they get caught. We draw some managerial and policy implications.
    Keywords: Ethics, Experimental survey, Moral judgment, Reference points
    JEL: C91 K42
    Date: 2020–05–26
  27. By: Iris Kesternich; Heiner Schumacher; Bettina Siflinger; Stefan Schwarz
    Abstract: We analyze to what extent work meaning – the significance of a job for others or for society – increases the willingness of employed and unemployed individuals to accept a job. To this end, we elicit reservation wages for a one-hour job and randomly vary its description as having either “high” or “low” meaning. Our subjects participate in the “Panel Study of Labour Market and Social Security” (PASS), which comprises a random draw from the German population and a random draw of unemployed individuals from the unemployment register. We can thus link subjects’ experimental behavior to rich survey data and control for selection into the experiment. For subjects who consider work meaning as very important (around one third of PASS respondents), high-meaning reduces the reservation wage by around 18 percent. By contrast, among unemployed individuals, work meaning increases the reservation wage by around 14 percent. We discuss how work meaning can have both positive and negative effects on labor supply when it interacts with fairness concerns or work norms.
    Keywords: Work Meaning, Labor Supply, Unemployment
    Date: 2020–05–14
  28. By: Jiang, Liang (Fudan University); Liu, Xiaobin (Zhejiang University); Zhang, Yichong (School of Economics, Singapore Management University)
    Abstract: This paper examines inference for quantile treatment effects (QTEs) in randomized experiments with matched-pairs designs (MPDs). We derive the limiting distribution of the QTE estimator under MPDs and highlight the difficulty of analytical inference due to parameter tuning. We show that a naive weighted bootstrap fails to approximate the limiting distribution of the QTE estimator under MPDs because it ignores the dependence structure within the matched pairs. We then propose two bootstrap methods that can consistently approximate that limiting distribution: the gradient bootstrap and the weighted bootstrap of the inverse propensity score weighted (IPW) estimator. The gradient bootstrap is free of tuning parameters but requires the knowledge of pairs’ identities. The weighted bootstrap of the IPW estimator does not require such knowledge but involves one tuning parameter. Both methods are straightforward to implement and able to provide pointwise confidence intervals and uniform confidence bands that achieve exact limiting rejection probabilities under the null. We illustrate their finite sample performance using both simulations and a well-known dataset on microfinance.
    Keywords: Bootstrap inference; matched pairs; quantile treatment effect; randomized control trials
    JEL: C14 C21
    Date: 2020–05–25
  29. By: Castillo, Marco (Texas A&M University); Dickinson, David L. (Appalachian State University)
    Abstract: When group outcomes depend on minimal effort (e.g., disease containment, work teams, or indigenous hunt success), a classic coordination problem exists. Using a well-established paradigm, we examine how a common cognitive state (insufficient sleep) impacts coordination outcomes. Our data indicate that insufficient sleep increases coordination failure costs, which suggests that the sleep or, more generally, cognitive composition of a group might determine its ability to escape from a trap of costly miscoordination and wasted cooperative efforts. These findings are first evidence of the potentially large externality of a commonly experienced biological state (insufficient sleep) that has infiltrated many societies.
    Keywords: coordination games, sleep, cooperative dilemma
    JEL: C91 D91
    Date: 2020–05
  30. By: Runsten, Philip (Dept. of Management and Organization); Werr, Andreas (Dept. of Management and Organization)
    Abstract: Contemporary organizations rarely systematically address team effectiveness. The main managerial focus is still on designing organizations through their structures and to “fill” roles with individuals having “matching” skills. Yet, almost all outputs of organizations are the results of collaborative activities between individuals. Organizational performance is to a large extent the result of the average collaborative quality at the team level, and there is a large variation in how well people collaborate. At the same time, research has consistently confirmed that teams can be worked with, and reach improvements, through different kinds of interventions, one of the most promising being team debriefs. Against this background this study develops and tests a team intervention that is generally applicable, team-led and self-guiding. The intervention is based on an application containing a training module and a self-guiding team-led debrief process. The intervention is tested in a longitudinal study of 50 experiment and 20 control teams from 22 international and Swedish private and public organizations. Results indicate a 15 to 22% increase in team performance. Seven experiment teams (“the second best”), clustered mainly in the high performing third of the sample developed negatively, while the top performing teams developed at sample average. Possible causes and how to identify these “second best” teams are discussed.
    Keywords: teams; collective intelligence; team intelligence; group intelligence; learning; psychological safety; transactive memory system; collective mind; heedful interrelating
    JEL: M50 M54 M59
    Date: 2020–05–20
  31. By: Junichi Hirose (Kochi University); Koji Kotani (School of Economics and Management, Kochi University of Technology); Yoshinori Nakagawa (School of Economics and Management, Kochi University of Technology)
    Abstract: Climate change is a serious problem that requires people’s cooperation to solve, and it has been reported that there have been gaps in perceptions about the cause. However, little is known about what makes people perceive that climate change is human-induced, nature-induced or induced by some other factor and the linkage between perception and cooperation. We analyze the determinants of human-induced perception and the impact of the gap in perceptions on cooperative behaviors toward climate change by conducting a survey experiment with a climate donation game with 400 Japanese subjects. First, the analysis identifies the importance of people’s scientific literacy in explaining the perception gaps in that those with high scientific literacy tend to have the perception of human-induced climate change. Second, people are identified as being cooperative toward climate change, as they have a prosocial value orientation, high scientific literacy and the perception of human-induced climate change, demonstrating two important roles of scientific literacy as not only a direct determinant but also an indirect one, through a mediator of people’s perceptions. Overall, the results suggest that scientific literacy shall be a key to enhancing cooperation toward climate change by promoting the perception of human-induced climate change.
    Keywords: Human-induced climate change, scientific literacy, climate donation game
    Date: 2020–05
  32. By: Ambler, Kate; de Brauw, Alan; Murphy, Mike
    Abstract: Conservation agriculture techniques can increase agricultural production while decreasing CO2 emissions, yet adoption in the developing world remains low—in part because many years of continuous adoption may be required to realize gains in production. We conduct a framed field experiment in northern Ghana to study how randomly assigned incentives and peer information may affect adoption. Incentives increase adoption, both while they are available and after withdrawal. There is no overall effect of peer information, but we do find evidence that information about long-term adoption increased adoption, particularly when that information shows that production gains have been achieved.
    Keywords: GHANA; WEST AFRICA; AFRICA SOUTH OF SAHARA; AFRICA; agriculture; conservation agriculture; incentives; agricultural productivity; field experimentation; framed field experiment; minimal soil disturbance (MSD); conventional practices (CP); Ghana Agricultural Sector Investment Programme (GASIP)
    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.