nep-exp New Economics Papers
on Experimental Economics
Issue of 2024‒03‒25
35 papers chosen by

  1. When do prediction markets return average beliefs? Experimental evidence By Marco Mantovani; Antonio Filippin
  2. Interference Produces False-Positive Pricing Experiments By Lars Roemheld; Justin Rao
  3. Algorithm Control and Responsibility: Shifting Blame to the User? By Mathieu Chevrier; Vincent Teixeira
  4. The swing voter's curse revisited: Transparency's impact on committee voting By Siddhartha Bandyopadhyay; Moumita Deb; Johannes Lohse; Rebecca McDonald
  5. Misperceived social norms and willingness to act against climate change By Andre, Peter; Boneva, Teodora; Chopra, Felix; Falk, Armin
  6. Do Voice and Social Information Contribute to Changing Views about Rent Control Policy? By Jordi Brandts; Isabel Busom; Cristina Lopez-Mayan
  7. “Do voice and social information contribute to changing views about rent control policy?” By Jordi Brandts; Isabel Busom; Cristina Lopez-Mayan
  8. Eliciting Paternalistic Preferences: An Incentivised Experiment By Schütze, Tobias; Carlhoff, Henrik; Witschel, Helena
  9. Anonymity, nonverbal communication and prosociality in digitized interactions: An experiment on charitable giving By Adam Zylbersztejn; Zakaria Babutsidze; Nobuyuki Hanaki; Marie-Sophie Roul
  10. Do Information Frictions and Corruption Perceptions Kill Competition? A Field Experiment On Public Procurement in Uganda By Emanuele Colonnelli; Francesco Loiacono; Edwin Muhumuza; Edoardo Teso
  11. When Nudges Backfire: Evidence from a Randomized Field Experiment to Boost Biological Pest Control By Chabé-Ferret, Sylvain; Le Coent, Philippe; Lefebvre, Caroline; Salanié, François; Subervie, Julie; Thoyer, Sophie; Préget, Raphaele
  12. Diversity and Discrimination in the Classroom By Dan Anderberg; Gordon B. Dahl; Cristina Felfe; Helmut Rainer; Thomas Siedler
  13. Replication of Changing Hearts and Minds? Why Media Messages Designed to Foster Empathy Often Fail (Gubler et al., 2022) By Jakub Prochazka; Shubham Pandey; Ondrej Castek; Mojtaba Firouzjaeiangalougah
  14. Individuals perceptions of electric vehicles and related policy : Findings from an online experiment By Hutchings, Siobhan
  15. Perceived Legitimacy and Motivation Effects of Authority By Holger Herz; Christian Zihlmann
  16. The Impact of a Peer-to-Peer Mentoring Program on University Choices and Performance By Stefania Bortolotti; Annalisa Loviglio
  17. On Injunctive Norms: Theory and Experiment By Juan-Bartroli, Pau
  18. Machine Learning Who to Nudge: Causal vs Predictive Targeting in a Field Experiment on Student Financial Aid Renewal By Athey, Susan; Keleher, Niall; Spiess, Jann
  19. The Impact of the Menstrual Cycle on Bargaining Behavior By Lina Lozano; Arno Riedl; Christina Rott
  20. Cheating in an Online Academic Exam: Mitigation through Multiplicity of Exam Versions? By Flip Klijn; Mehdi Mdaghri Alaoui; Marc Vorsatz
  21. Fintech Failure: Examining B2B and B2C Solutions for Two-Sided Platform Adoption By Kankanhalli, Shreya; Anderson, Stephen J.; Iacovone, Leonardo; Narayanan, Sridhar
  22. A meta-analysis of disposition effect experiments By Stephen L Cheung
  23. Socioeconomic Inequality in Life Expectancy: Perception and Policy Demand By Lasse J. Jessen; Sebastian Koehne; Patrick Nüß; Jens Ruhose
  24. Novelty in Content Creation: Experimental Results Using Image Recognition on a Large Social Network By Huang, Justin; Kaul, Rupali; Narayanan, Sridhar
  25. Long-Range Forecasts As Climate Adaptation: Experimental Evidence From Developing-Country Agriculture By Fiona Burlig; Amir Jina; Erin M. Kelley; Gregory V. Lane; Harshil Sahai
  26. The Role of Advertisers and Platforms in Monetizing Misinformation: Descriptive and Experimental Evidence By Wajeeha Ahmad; Ananya Sen; Chuck Eesley; Erik Brynjolfsson
  27. Perfect Bayesian Persuasion By Elliot Lipnowski; Doron Ravid; Denis Shishkin
  28. What Kinds of Incentives Encourage Participation in Democracy? Evidence from a Massive Online Governance Experiment By Hall, Andrew B.; Oak, Eliza R.
  29. The right amount of information for environmental awareness? When the level of visual complexity helps motivate more responsible behavior By Ulysse Soulat
  30. Dynamically Consistent Intertemporal Dual-Self Expected Utility By Mononen, Lasse
  31. Awareness of self-control By Mohammad Mehdi Mousavi; Mahdi Kohan Sefidi; Shirin Allahyarkhani
  32. Signaling Class: An Examination of the Treatment Validity of Names Used to Signal Race in Bias Experiments with Methodological Recommendations for Name Selection By Gaddis, S. Michael
  33. Moral Preferences over Health-Wealth Trade-offs By Antonio Filippin; Marco Mantovani
  34. Processing of On-Farm Precision Experiment Data in the DIFM Project By Edge, Brittani; Mieno, Taro; Bullock, David S.
  35. Digital Interventions and Habit Formation in Educational Technology By Agrawal, Keshav; Athey, Susan; Kanodia, Ayush; Palikot, Emil

  1. By: Marco Mantovani; Antonio Filippin
    Abstract: In prediction markets prices can be interpreted as the average belief of the traders under restrictive theoretical assumptions, namely specific risk preferences (e.g., log utility) and the prior information equilibrium. Prior information equilibrium is more likely to hold in a call auction, but prediction markets are usually implemented in double auctions that are known to better aggregate information. In this paper we present a laboratory experiment meant to shed some light on this tension, assessing the influence of the main elements that should affect the equilibrium price also manipulating the market institution. We do not find that risk preferences and incorrect beliefs play a significant role in our data. We find instead that in the double auction– where at least partial information aggregation through belief revisions should be expected – prices are closer to the average belief than in the call auction – where, instead, belief aggregation should be expected. We also find evidence that beliefs are updated in the direction of observed prices, rather than of the true state.
    Keywords: Prediction markets, Information aggregation, Laboratory experiment, Risk preferences, Beliefs
    JEL: D81 C92 D40
    Date: 2024–03
  2. By: Lars Roemheld; Justin Rao
    Abstract: It is standard practice in online retail to run pricing experiments by randomizing at the article-level, i.e. by changing prices of different products to identify treatment effects. Due to customers' cross-price substitution behavior, such experiments suffer from interference bias: the observed difference between treatment groups in the experiment is typically significantly larger than the global effect that could be expected after a roll-out decision of the tested pricing policy. We show in simulations that such bias can be as large as 100%, and report experimental data implying bias of similar magnitude. Finally, we discuss approaches for de-biased pricing experiments, suggesting observational methods as a potentially attractive alternative to clustering.
    Date: 2024–02
  3. By: Mathieu Chevrier (Université Côte d'Azur, CNRS, GREDEG, France); Vincent Teixeira (Université de Lorraine, CNRS, BETA, France)
    Abstract: We conducted a laboratory experiment where participants could either choose between an equal or unequal allocation, either delegate the choice to an algorithm controlled by another participant. This participant either has a high control on the algorithm (the algorithm follow perfectly the participants' decision) either a low control (the algorithm sometimes follows the participants' decisions). Our results suggest that a high level of control by the participants over the algorithm implies that participants bear full responsibility in the event of an unequal decision. A low level of control by the participants over the algorithm implies that the participants are perceived as 56.17% less responsible than participants who have a high level of control over the algorithm. The delegator is perceived as 56.52% more responsible than the delegator who delegates to an algorithm that is fully controlled. Finally, we demonstrate that participants with low control over the algorithm are more likely to choose an unequal allocation when they can hide themselves behind the algorithm. These results imply that companies might prioritize an algorithm's profitability over ethical considerations, effectively shifting the burden of responsibility to the user.
    Keywords: Artificial Intelligence, Delegation, Responsibility, Punishment, Laboratory experiment
    JEL: C92 D63
    Date: 2024–03
  4. By: Siddhartha Bandyopadhyay (University of Birmingham); Moumita Deb (University of Heidelberg); Johannes Lohse (University of Birmingham); Rebecca McDonald (University of Birmingham)
    Abstract: Majority voting is considered an efficient information aggregation mechanism in committee decision-making. We examine if this holds in environments where voters first need to acquire information from sources of varied quality and cost. In such environments, efficiency may depend on free-riding incentives and the 'transparency' regime - the knowledge voters have about other voters' acquired information. Intuitively, more transparent regimes should improve efficiency. Our theoretical model instead demonstrates that under some conditions, less transparent regimes can match the rate of efficient information aggregation in more transparent regimes if all members cast a vote based on the information they hold. However, a Pareto inferior swing voter's curse (SVC) equilibrium arises in less transparent regimes if less informed members abstain. We test this proposition in a lab experiment, randomly assigning participants to different transparency regimes. Results in less transparent regimes are consistent with the SVC equilibrium, leading to less favourable outcomes than in more transparent regimes. We thus offer the first experimental evidence on the effects of different transparency regimes on information acquisition, voting, and overall efficiency
    Keywords: Information acquisition, Voting, Transparency, Swing voter's curse
    JEL: C92 D71 D83
    Date: 2024–01
  5. By: Andre, Peter; Boneva, Teodora; Chopra, Felix; Falk, Armin
    Abstract: We document the individual willingness to act against climate change and study the role of social norms in a large sample of US adults. Individual beliefs about social norms positively predict pro-climate donations, comparable in strength to universal moral values and economic preferences such as patience and reciprocity. However, we document systematic misperceptions of social norms. Respondents vastly underestimate the prevalence of climate-friendly behaviors and norms. Correcting these misperceptions in an experiment causally raises individual willingness to act against climate change as well as individual support for climate policies. The effects are strongest for individuals who are skeptical about the existence and threat of global warming.
    Keywords: Climate change, climate behavior, climate policies, social norms, misperception, beliefs, economic preferences, moral values, survey experiments
    JEL: D64 D83 D91 Q51 Q54 Z13
    Date: 2024
  6. By: Jordi Brandts; Isabel Busom; Cristina Lopez-Mayan
    Abstract: Citizens’ ability to make informed and thoughtful choices when voting for policy proposals rests on their awareness of and access to accurate information about the costs and benefits that each proposal entails. We study whether specific social factors affect the disposition to drop a misconception, the belief that rent control increases the availability of affordable housing. We design an on–line experiment to test whether giving voice, aggregate social information and disaggregate social information increase the effect of a video explaining the evidence on the consequences of rent control policies. While voice and aggregate social information do not have an additional effect relative to a control group that is shown the same video, supplying disaggregate social has an additional impact on updating beliefs. Furthermore, we find that changes in beliefs widely translate into intended voting and recommending the video. Finally, although ideological position and a zero–sum mentality are correlated with the initial misconception, these two factors do not thwart the disposition to update beliefs after receiving experts’ information.
    Keywords: misconceptions, policy beliefs, communication, social information, online experiments, refutation
    JEL: A1 A2 C9 D83 D9
    Date: 2024–02
  7. By: Jordi Brandts (Instituto de Análisis Económico and Barcelona School of Economics); Isabel Busom (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona.); Cristina Lopez-Mayan (AQR-IREA, University of Barcelona)
    Abstract: Citizens’ ability to make informed and thoughtful choices when voting for policy proposals rests on their awareness of and access to accurate information about the costs and benefits that each proposal entails. We study whether specific social factors affect the disposition to drop a misconception, the belief that rent control increases the availability of affordable housing. We design an online experiment to test whether giving voice, aggregate social information and disaggregate social information increase the effect of a video explaining the evidence on the consequences of rent control policies. While voice and aggregate social information do not have an additional effect relative to a control group that is shown the same video, supplying disaggregate social has an additional impact on updating beliefs. Furthermore, we find that changes in beliefs widely translate into intended voting and recommending the video. Finally, although ideological position and a zero–sum mentality are correlated with the initial misconception, these two factors do not thwart the disposition to update beliefs after receiving experts’ information.
    Keywords: Misconceptions, Policy beliefs, Communication, Social information, Online experiments, Refutation. JEL classification: A1, A2, C9, D83, D9
    Date: 2024–02
  8. By: Schütze, Tobias; Carlhoff, Henrik; Witschel, Helena
    Abstract: Individual paternalistic preferences are central to the question to what extent the state may intervene in the freedom of choice of its citizens. Albeit its practical and theoretical importance, there is yet no incentivised tool to elicit those preferences. In this paper, we present a simple and abstract experiment to elicit paternalistic preferences and also investigate its relationship with individual psychological constructs that are argued to correlate with paternalistic preferences. In line with previous empirical results, our experimental data suggest that paternalistic preferences are indeed heterogeneously distributed in our sample. Moreover, we identify outcome related and autonomy related motives as important factors of paternalistic preferences. More precisely, (especially young) individuals with a strong desire for autonomy are more likely to opt for an informed choice and individuals with a strong focus on the outcome are more likely to opt for an uninformed choice than giving up their autonomy.
    Keywords: paternalistic preferences, revealed preferences approach, psychology of decision making, autonomous decision making, paternalism, libertarianism
    JEL: C91 D91 H10
    Date: 2024
  9. By: Adam Zylbersztejn (Univ Lyon 2, Université Lumière Lyon 2, GATE UMR 5824, 69130 Ecully, France; research fellow at Vistula University Warsaw (AFiBV), Warsaw, Poland); Zakaria Babutsidze (SKEMA Business School, Université Côte d’Azur (GREDEG) and OFCE, Sciences Po Paris, France); Nobuyuki Hanaki (Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University, Japan; University of Limassol, Cyprus); Marie-Sophie Roul (CGEMP, LEDa UMR 8007-260, University Paris Dauphine, PSL Research University, Place du Maréchal de Lattre de Tassigny, 75016 Paris, France)
    Abstract: We empirically examine the value of modern digital communication tools for inducing prosocial behavior. In our online experiment (N = 594), charity members transmit a standardized message to potential donors through alternative digital communication channels varying the amount of nonverbal content (written message in the baseline TEXT condition vs. voice recording in AUDIO vs. video-recorded discourse in VIDEO). We find partial support for the initial conjecture that individuals are more cooperative towards strangers the less anonymous the latter become to the former. Compared to the baseline TEXT condition, our AUDIO treatment induces a nearly 40% increase in the average donation. However, the transmission of nonverbal cues may backfire: the effect observed in the richest VIDEO condition has only half the magnitude of the one in AUDIO. We attribute this phenomenon to the “avoiding the ask” behavior previously documented in the charity giving literature. We also rule out the possibility that these treatment effects stem from perceptual mechanisms by which these changes in prosociality are driven by the differences in the perception of charity members in the stimuli, suggesting that the treatment effects capture the intrinsic value of reducing anonymity for promoting prosociality in the digital world.
    Keywords: Digital communication, nonverbal content, charitable giving, online, economic experiment
    JEL: D64 D83
    Date: 2024
  10. By: Emanuele Colonnelli; Francesco Loiacono; Edwin Muhumuza; Edoardo Teso
    Abstract: We study whether information frictions and corruption perceptions deter firms from doing business with the government. We conduct two nationwide randomized controlled trials (RCTs) in collaboration with the national public procurement supervisory and anti-corruption agency in Uganda. The first RCT aims to increase firms’ information on available procurement opportunities, which is limited due to the lack of a centralized e- procurement system. We provide firms with direct and timely access to information about government tenders over a two-year period. The second RCT focuses on firms’ perceptions about the integrity of public entities, which we experimentally show are key drivers of firms’ participation in procurement. We provide firms with access to structured information on other firms’ perceptions and on anti-corruption audits. We find that increasing information on available procurement opportunities alone does not increase firm participation in public procurement. However, changing firms’ perceptions about the integrity of public entities increases firms’ total number of bids and total government contracts won. Based on our findings, our partner agency implemented several measures to further restore firms’ trust in public entities. Overall, our findings point to the limits of transparency reforms that aim to increase competition in public procurement without accounting for firms’ perceptions about government corruption and inefficiency.
    JEL: G3 H57 O12 P0
    Date: 2024–02
  11. By: Chabé-Ferret, Sylvain; Le Coent, Philippe; Lefebvre, Caroline; Salanié, François; Subervie, Julie; Thoyer, Sophie; Préget, Raphaele
    Abstract: Nudges are increasingly used to alter the behavior of economic agents as an alternative to monetary incentives. However, little is known as to whether nudges can backfire, that is, how and when they may generate effects opposite to those they intend to achieve. We provide the first field evidence of a nudge that is designed to encourage pro-environmental behavior, which instead backfires. We randomly allocate a social comparison nudge inviting winegrowers to adopt biological pest control as an alternative to chemical pesticide use. We find that our nudge decreases by half the adoption of biological pest control among the largest vineyards, where the bulk of adoption occurs. We show that this result can be rationalized in an economic model where winegrowers and winegrower-cooperative man-agers bargain over future rents generated by the adoption of biological pest control. This study highlights the importance of experimenting on a small scale with nudges aimed at encouraging adoption of virtuous behaviors in order to detect unexpected adverse effects, particularly in contexts where negotiations on the sharing of the costs of adoption are likely to occur.
    Keywords: Nudges; Behavioral Economics; Pesticides; Government Policy
    JEL: D90 Q25 Q58
    Date: 2024–02
  12. By: Dan Anderberg; Gordon B. Dahl; Cristina Felfe; Helmut Rainer; Thomas Siedler
    Abstract: What makes diversity unifying in some settings but divisive in others? We examine how the mixing of ethnic groups in German schools affects intergroup cooperation and trust. We leverage the quasi-random assignment of students to classrooms within schools to obtain variation in the type of diversity that prevails in a peer group. We combine this with a large-scale, incentivized lab-in-field-experiment based on the investment game, allowing us to assess the in-group bias of native German students in their interactions with fellow natives (in-group) versus immigrants (out-group). We find in-group bias peaks in culturally polarized classrooms, where the native and immigrant groups are both large, but have different religious or language backgrounds. In contrast, in classrooms characterized by non-cultural polarization, fractionalization, or a native supermajority, there are significantly lower levels of own-group favoritism. In terms of mechanisms, we find empirical evidence that culturally polarized classrooms foster negative stereotypes about immigrants' trustworthiness and amplify taste-based discrimination, both of which are costly and lead to lower payouts. In contrast, accurate statistical discrimination is ruled out by design in our experiment. These findings suggest that extra efforts are needed to counteract low levels of inclusivity and trust in culturally polarized environments.
    JEL: J15
    Date: 2024–02
  13. By: Jakub Prochazka (Masaryk University, Faculty of Economics and Administration, Department of Business Management, Brno, Czech Republic); Shubham Pandey (Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, Mumbai); Ondrej Castek (Masaryk University, Faculty of Economics and Administration, Department of Business Management, Brno, Czech Republic); Mojtaba Firouzjaeiangalougah (Masaryk University, Faculty of Economics and Administration, Brno, Czech Republic)
    Abstract: This paper focuses on computational reproducibility and robustness replicability of Gubler et al.’s(2022) studies which examine the effect of media messages on empathic concern, dissonance, and out-group policy attitudes. The original paper tests four hypotheses using two online experiments with large samples from one US state (N1=5, 800; N2=2, 200). Regarding the first experiment, we successfully reproduced the effect that initial antipathy weakens the effect of humanizing treatment on empathic concern (H1). However, we show that the moderating effect is negligible and has little practical significance. Moreover, the individual effect estimates in our analyses slightly differed from the original paper due to different procedure of data cleaning and minor coding errors in the original paper. The most relevant difference was the opposite effect of gender than reported in the original paper. We also show that empathic concern might mediate the effect of humanizing treatment on attitudes toward immigrants (H3). The original study rejected the mediation hypothesis due to not finding a total effect of humanizing treatment on attitudes. In contrast, we found that humanization treatment has a positive indirect effect on attitudes through empathic concern. At the same time, it also has a direct negative effect on attitudes. For the second experiment (H1, H2a, H2b, H3), we attempted to reproduce the results using a different software. We partially succeeded once receiving support from the authors of the original study. We note throughout the report issues we have encountered.
    Keywords: Reproduction, Replication, Research Transparency, Open Science, Economics, Political Science, Persuasion, Political Communication, Empathic Concern
    JEL: B41 C10 C81 P49
    Date: 2024–03
  14. By: Hutchings, Siobhan (Monash University)
    Abstract: We use an online experiment and survey to establish that consumers are misinformed about electric vehicles and that correcting misinformation has little impact on preferences for electric vehicles but some impact on electric vehicle policy preferences. Specifically, correcting misperceptions does not change consumers’ willingness to support pro-electric vehicle government initiatives but does cause specific EV policies to be preferred more or less. We estimate the effect of correcting misinformation by employing two information treatments : an informative narrative and a fact sheet. These treatments successfully make electric vehicle perceptions more accurate, but neither narratives nor fact sheets are more successful at correcting misperceptions. We determine preferences using survey questions, relying on indirect and incentivised questions to rule out the influence of social desirability bias on participants’ responses.
    Keywords: Consumer preferences ; Behavioral economics ; Electric vehicles ; Survey experiments ; Information treatments JEL classifications: C83 ; C90 ; D12 ; D83 ; D91 ; L62 ; Q48
    Date: 2024
  15. By: Holger Herz; Christian Zihlmann
    Abstract: Organizational structures are an important determinant of individual incentives and thus individual motivation in organizations. We study whether their effects on individual motivation go beyond incentives and how they relate to the perceived legitimacy of organizational structure. To this end, we design a laboratory experiment in which we exogenously manipulate the organizational structure in a way that leaves the incentives of all individuals unaffected, but changes the perceived legitimacy of the organizational structure. Our data show that organizational structure indeed affects behavior beyond monetary incentive effects and that the observed changes are significantly associated with changes in perceived legitimacy.
    Keywords: legitimacy, organization, motivation
    JEL: D01 D23 D91 M50
    Date: 2024
  16. By: Stefania Bortolotti; Annalisa Loviglio
    Abstract: We study the impact of a personalized mentoring program on university enrollment choices and academic outcomes. Conducting a randomized controlled trial among 337 high school students, we find that the program significantly influences students' decisions, increasing the likelihood of choosing a field aligned with their mentor's by 22 percentage points, representing a 45% increase from the baseline. Notably, the program also shifts preferences towards STEM/Economics fields, enhancing prospective wages by 3.1-3.7%, without negatively impacting university performance. These findings underscore the mentorship's potential to guide students towards more informed and beneficial educational choices.
    JEL: A20 C93 I23 I26
    Date: 2024–03
  17. By: Juan-Bartroli, Pau
    Abstract: Recent studies have shown that individuals’ behavior is sensitive to their perceptions of socially appropri-ate behavior. In this paper, I introduce a theory of injunctive norms in which individuals evaluate the social appropriateness of a given behavior using universalization reasoning. The theory allows one to compute the social appropriateness of any behavior without relying on individuals’ expectations, preferences, and actual behavior. Furthermore, it can be applied to a wide range of interactions and rationalize several observations unaccounted for by theories of social preferences. I test the theory’s predictions with evidence from past studies and new data from a lab experiment.
    Keywords: Social Norms; Morality; Lab Experiments; Social Preferences
    JEL: C91 D91
    Date: 2024–03
  18. By: Athey, Susan (Stanford U); Keleher, Niall (Innovations for Poverty Action, New Haven); Spiess, Jann (Stanford U)
    Abstract: In many settings, interventions may be more effective for some individuals than others, so that targeting interventions may be beneficial. We analyze the value of targeting in the context of a large-scale field experiment with over 53, 000 college students, where the goal was to use "nudges" to encourage students to renew their financial-aid applications before a non-binding deadline. We begin with baseline approaches to targeting. First, we target based on a causal forest that estimates heterogeneous treatment effects and then assigns students to treatment according to those estimated to have the highest treatment effects. Next, we evaluate two alternative targeting policies, one targeting students with low predicted probability of renewing financial aid in the absence of the treatment, the other targeting those with high probability. The predicted baseline outcome is not the ideal criterion for targeting, nor is it a priori clear whether to prioritize low, high, or intermediate predicted probability. Nonetheless, targeting on low baseline outcomes is common in practice, for example because the relationship between individual characteristics and treatment effects is often difficult or impossible to estimate with historical data. We propose hybrid approaches that incorporate the strengths of both predictive approaches (accurate estimation) and causal approaches (correct criterion); we show that targeting intermediate baseline outcomes is most effective, while targeting based on low baseline outcomes is detrimental. In one year of the experiment, nudging all students improved early filing by an average of 6.4 percentage points over a baseline average of 37% filing, and we estimate that targeting half of the students using our preferred policy attains around 75% of this benefit.
    Date: 2023–10
  19. By: Lina Lozano; Arno Riedl; Christina Rott
    Abstract: We investigate experimentally how the menstrual cycle affects bargaining behavior and bargaining outcomes of women. Female participants negotiate in an unstructured bilateral bargaining game with asymmetric information about the allocation of a surplus (’pie size’). We find that the menstrual cycle affects bargaining behavior and that the effects depend on the information players have. Players who are informed about the pie size are less compromising during ovulation and receive higher payoffs conditional on reaching an agreement. Uninformed players achieve higher final payoffs during ovulation, which is mainly driven by higher agreement rates.
    Keywords: bargaining, asymmetric information, menstrual cycle, biological factors
    JEL: C78 C91 D87 J16
    Date: 2024
  20. By: Flip Klijn; Mehdi Mdaghri Alaoui; Marc Vorsatz
    Abstract: We study academic integrity in a final exam of a compulsory course with 463 undergraduate students at a major Spanish university. The exam is an unproctored online multiple-choice exam without backtracking. A key characteristic is that for each type of problem, groups of students receive different versions. Since each version appears in both an earlier and later stage of the exam, we can exploit grade points and timestamps to study students' academic integrity. We observe a significant decrease in completion time in later rounds; however, surprisingly, there is no corresponding impact on average grade points. The precise number of different versions does not seem to have an effect on either variable. Our findings suggest that studies of potential cheating may have to pay attention to completion times apart from (or even instead of) grades.
    Keywords: Field Experiment, academic integrity, online exam
    JEL: A22 C93 D9 I21 I23
    Date: 2024–02
  21. By: Kankanhalli, Shreya (Cornell U); Anderson, Stephen J. (Texas A&M U); Iacovone, Leonardo (World Bank and Hertie School); Narayanan, Sridhar (Stanford U)
    Abstract: Across emerging economies, physical cash is the ubiquitous means of transaction for retailers and their consumers. Despite the widespread availability, affordability and benefits of Fintech solutions for digital payments in these regions, there is an observed failure by the vast majority of retail firms to accept digital payments. Our paper examines this puzzle to uncover causes and solutions for such two-sided platform adoption failure in offline retail contexts. Using evidence from a random audit of a nationwide "Fintech-drop" public program in Mexico, we propose that two critical frictions constrain the adoption (i.e., initial take-up and usage) of two-sided Fintech platforms: (i) on the supply-side, platform onboarding is highly complex; and (ii) on the demand-side, retailers do not perceive enough consumer demand to justify adoption. We design two novel interventions in the business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) channels targeting the respective frictions and test their efficacy through a randomized controlled field experiment with 479 retailers in Guadalajara, Mexico. The B2B intervention increases successful Fintech solution adoption by 21.4 percentage points versus the control group, while the B2C intervention has an additional positive impact in increasing adoption rates by 13.4 percentage points versus the B2B group. The B2B intervention effect is driven by overcoming critical onboarding challenges to promote initial take-up of Fintech, while the B2C intervention effect is driven by growing local consumer demand to use digital payments when shopping. These results have implications for managers and policymakers promoting two-sided platform adoption and driving payment digitization in emerging economies.
    Date: 2023–12
  22. By: Stephen L Cheung
    Abstract: This paper reports a meta-analysis of the disposition effect – the reluctance to liquidate losing investments – in three standard experimental environments in which this behaviour is normatively a mistake. Under baseline conditions, the literature finds that investors are around 10% more willing to sell winning compared to losing assets, despite optimal choice dictating the opposite. In treatment tests of interventions to debias the disposition effect, the meta-analytic effect size implies slightly over a one-half standard deviation reduction in the bias. There is little evidence of selective reporting of the baseline disposition effect, but stronger evidence of bias in reporting treatment effects.
    Keywords: behavioural finance, disposition effect, meta-analysis
    Date: 2024–03
  23. By: Lasse J. Jessen; Sebastian Koehne; Patrick Nüß; Jens Ruhose
    Abstract: Using survey experiments in the United States and Germany with 12, 000 participants, we examine perceptions of life expectancy inequality between rich and poor people. The life expectancy of the poor is underestimated more than that of the rich, leading to exaggerated perceptions of inequality in both countries. Receiving accurate information narrows concerns about this inequality. However, the impact of information on policy demand is limited because support for policies addressing life expectancy for the poor is consistently high, regardless of varying perceptions of inequality. We conclude that there is strong and unconditional public support for health equity policies.
    Keywords: socioeconomic inequality in life expectancy, health care, information treatment, survey experiment
    JEL: C90 D71 D83 I14 I18
    Date: 2024
  24. By: Huang, Justin (U of Michigan); Kaul, Rupali (INSEAD); Narayanan, Sridhar (Stanford U)
    Abstract: Social networks utilize award recognition and front pages to motivate user content creation, facilitate consumer discovery of content, and provide attention and recognition to the best content. Past research shows that such attention and recognition increase the volume of content shared on the networks. But how do these affect the nature of content shared on platforms? Do they cause creators to share content similar to that which received attention and recognition? Or do creators take risks and create different content? We investigate these questions in the context of a digital art-sharing social network. We implement a randomized controlled experiment to induce exogenous variation in attention and recognition provided to users' content. Using a transfer learning machine learning algorithm, we convert complex images into lower-level features to analyze changes in content novelty. We find that awarded creators produce more novel content, relative to both the awarded content and their past work. This result is robust to a variety of ways in which we classify image content. Our results illustrate the importance of tools that induce attention and recognition to the creation and development of diverse content by social media creators and give insights into factors that motivate content creation.
    Date: 2023–11
  25. By: Fiona Burlig; Amir Jina; Erin M. Kelley; Gregory V. Lane; Harshil Sahai
    Abstract: Climate change increases weather variability, exacerbating agricultural risk in poor countries. Risk-averse farmers are unable to tailor their planting decisions to the coming season, and underinvest in profitable inputs. Accurate, long-range forecasts enable farmers to optimize for the season ahead. We experimentally evaluate monsoon onset forecasts in India, randomizing 250 villages into control; a forecast group receiving information well in advance of onset; and a benchmark index insurance group. Forecast farmers update their beliefs and their behavior: farmers who receive “bad news” relative to their priors substantially reduce land under cultivation and certain input expenditures, while those receiving “good news” significantly increase input expenditures. The forecast also impacts crop choice, as farmers tailor their investments. These investment changes meaningfully alter ex post outcomes. In contrast, insurance, which provides no information, increases investments but does not change crops. Our results demonstrate that forecasts are a promising tool for climate adaptation
    JEL: D81 O12 O13 Q12 Q54
    Date: 2024–02
  26. By: Wajeeha Ahmad; Ananya Sen; Chuck Eesley; Erik Brynjolfsson
    Abstract: The financial motivation to earn advertising revenue by spreading misinformation has been widely conjectured to be among the main reasons misinformation continues to be prevalent online. Research aimed at reducing the spread of misinformation has so far focused on user-level interventions with little emphasis on how the supply of misinformation can itself be countered. In this work, we show how online misinformation is largely financially sustained via advertising, examine how financing misinformation affects the advertisers and ad platforms involved and outline ways of reducing the financing of misinformation. First, we find that advertising on misinformation outlets is pervasive for companies across several industries and is amplified by digital ad platforms that automatically distribute companies’ ads across the web. Using an information provision survey experiment, we show that people decrease their demand for a company’s products or services upon learning about its role in monetizing misinformation via online ads. To shed light on why misinformation continues to be monetized despite the potential backlash for the advertisers involved, we survey decision-makers at companies. We find that most decision-makers are unaware of their companies’ ads appearing on misinformation websites but have a strong preference to avoid appearing on such websites. Moreover, those uncertain and unaware about their role in financing misinformation increase their demand for a platform-based solution to reduce monetizing misinformation upon learning about how platforms amplify ad placement on misinformation websites. We identify low-cost, scalable information-based interventions that digital platforms could implement to reduce the financial incentive to misinform and counter the supply of misinformation online.
    JEL: D8 M30 O3
    Date: 2024–03
  27. By: Elliot Lipnowski; Doron Ravid; Denis Shishkin
    Abstract: A sender commits to an experiment to persuade a receiver. Accounting for the sender's experiment-choice incentives, and not presupposing a receiver tie-breaking rule when indifferent, we characterize when the sender's equilibrium payoff is unique and so coincides with her "Bayesian persuasion" value. A sufficient condition in finite models is that every action which is receiver-optimal at some belief is uniquely optimal at some other belief -- a generic property. We similarly show the equilibrium sender payoff is typically unique in ordered models. In an extension, we show uniqueness generates robustness to imperfect sender commitment.
    Date: 2024–02
  28. By: Hall, Andrew B. (Stanford U); Oak, Eliza R. (Yale U)
    Abstract: How can we democratically govern the AI, social media, and online platforms of the future? Today, low participation is a major barrier to community governance online. We leverage a digital quasi-experiment that allows us to study the links between incentives and political participation at a scale and granularity not previously possible. We focus on a web3 startup called Optimism that distributed digital tokens worth roughly $28 million USD to more than 300, 000 active participants in its governance system as part of a sequence of rewards meant to encourage long-run engagement. Studying 1.2 million unique wallet addresses, we find that the reward scheme induces new users to participate in Optimism's governance, has larger effects for smaller token holders, and leads voters to spread their votes across delegates more widely. Together, the results suggest that reward schemes that give people a durable stake in the community and promise a sequence of future rewards are able to broaden participation in online democracy noticeably, at least in the short run under the proper conditions.
    Date: 2023–11
  29. By: Ulysse Soulat (NUDD - Usages du Numérique pour le Développement Durable - ULR - La Rochelle Université)
    Abstract: Making sustainable urban mobility more attractive through a self-tracking application could contribute to behavioral change. Marketing research reflects the importance of choosing the right information to convey in order to encourage responsible practices. In this study, we investigate the effect of visual complexity on people's intentions to reduce the carbon footprint of their journeys using a self-tracking application. An experiment involving 362 participants examines the impact of self-tracking on behavioral intentions through the prism of visual complexity. On the one hand, the experiment shows that moderately complex home pages have a positive effect on behavioral intentions. On the other hand, when subjects are subjected to a moderate level of visual complexity (vs. simple or complex), their sense of self-efficacy and intention to use are higher.
    Abstract: Rendre la mobilité urbaine durable plus attractive par une application de self-tracking pourrait contribuer au changement de comportement. Les recherches en marketing reflètent l'importance du choix de l'information à transmettre afin d'amener à des pratiques responsables. Dans cette recherche, nous étudions l'effet de la complexité visuelle sur les intentions de réduire l'empreinte carbone de ses déplacements grâce à une application de self-tracking. Une mise en situation auprès de 362 participants interroge le phénomène du self-tracking sur les intentions comportementales par le prisme de la complexité visuelle. D'une part, l'expérimentation conduite montre que les pages d'accueil de complexité modérée ont un effet positif sur les intentions comportementales. D'autre part, lorsque les sujets sont soumis à un niveau de complexité visuelle modéré (vs simple ou complexe), leur sentiment d'auto-efficacité et leur intention d'utilisation sont plus élevés.
    Keywords: Mobile application, self-efficacy, visual complexity, responsible behavior, self-tracking, Application mobile, auto-efficacité, complexité visuelle, comportement responsable
    Date: 2023–06–01
  30. By: Mononen, Lasse (Center for Mathematical Economics, Bielefeld University)
    Abstract: Experimental evidence on intertemporal choice has documented a preference for consumption smoothing that cannot be explained by discounted utility. We study a general class of dynamically consistent intertemporal dual-self preferences that accommodate a preference for consumption smoothing. We show that these general preferences have a simple and tractable structure. They are characterized by a gain-loss asymmetry where gains with respect to future utility are discounted differently than losses. As applications, first, we show that under the stationarity axiom, these preferences are convex or concave. Second, we show that dynamically consistent intertemporal Choquet expected utility coincides with discounted expected utility.
    Date: 2024–02–21
  31. By: Mohammad Mehdi Mousavi; Mahdi Kohan Sefidi; Shirin Allahyarkhani
    Abstract: Economists modeled self-control problems in decisions of people with the time-inconsistence preferences model. They argued that the source of self-control problems could be uncertainty and temptation. This paper uses an experimental test offered to individuals instantaneous reward and future rewards to measure awareness of self-control problems in a tempting condition and also measure the effect of commitment and flexibility cost on their welfare. The quasi-hyperbolic discounting model with time discount factor and present bias at the same time was used for making a model for measuring awareness and choice reversal conditions. The test showed 66% awareness of self-control (partially naive behaviors) in individuals. The welfare implication for individuals increased with commitment and flexibility costs. The result can be useful in marketing and policy-making fields design precisely offers for customers and society.
    Date: 2024–02
  32. By: Gaddis, S. Michael (NWEA)
    Abstract: Racial bias experiments commonly use names to signal race as treatments. However, recent methodological examinations find that individuals often perceive class and race together. This calls into question the treatment validity of thousands of experiments. Still, little evidence exists on what leads to name perceptions and how scholars might increase treatment validity in future studies. I suggest that racialized and classed demographic naming patterns may influence individuals’ perceptions of names. I conducted two survey experiments and used demographic birth record data to examine social class perceptions. In total, 7, 695 respondents provided 82, 321 perceptions on 636 combinations of first and last names. Although demographic naming patterns have small effects on respondents’ social class perceptions of White-signaled names, classed patterns have a large effect on respondents’ perceptions of Black-signaled names. These findings suggest that treatment validity is a severe problem for bias experiments. To help mitigate this problem, I provide seven recommendations that researchers should implement in all experiments that use names to signal various characteristics. Scholars who follow these recommendations will neutralize or minimize threats to treatment validity, engage in a more empirical and open scientific process, and, in some cases, open up new avenues of research on bias.
    Date: 2023–12–15
  33. By: Antonio Filippin; Marco Mantovani
    Abstract: Using a choice experiment we analyze moral preferences over fatalities and jobs losses due to the pandemic in Italy, the UK and the US. A structural estimation displays, surprisingly, aversion to diversification among these two bads. We also find that about 95% of the weight in the participants’ utility function goes to health, and that respondents’ stable traits (such as political orientation or risk aversion) influence attitudes more than their personal experiences with the consequences of the pandemic. Moreover, policy responses look misaligned with estimated preferences. Italy adopted more stringent containment measures, while Italian respondents display a relatively weaker pro-health attitude.
    Keywords: Covid-19, Structural estimation, Health-wealth trade-off, Moral preferences.
    Date: 2024–03
  34. By: Edge, Brittani (University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign); Mieno, Taro; Bullock, David S.
    Abstract: This work summarizes the challenges brought to data processing in the context of on-farm precision experiments (OFPE). We review the errors and proposed data cleaning from previous literature on cleaning agricultural data and discuss how these previous methods can or cannot be applied to agricultural data from an OFPE. Finally, we present the details of the DIFM data processing protocol and where it can be improved based on the literature.
    Date: 2024–02–21
  35. By: Agrawal, Keshav (Stanford U); Athey, Susan (Stanford U); Kanodia, Ayush (Stanford U); Palikot, Emil (Stanford U)
    Abstract: We evaluate a contest-based intervention intended to increase the usage of an educational app that helps children in India learn to read English. The evaluation included approximately 10, 000 children, of whom about half were randomly selected to enter a reading contest, whereby those children who ranked sufficiently high on a leaderboard were awarded a set of books. During 12 weeks after the contest, when the treatment group had no additional incentives to use the app, children in the treated group read 75% more stories than the control group, consistent with the formation of reading habits. Furthermore, post-contest, the treated group abandoned the app 6% less often than the control group. These results demonstrate that low-cost interventions have the potential to be used to instill reading habits in the digital context.
    Date: 2024–01

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.