New Economics Papers
on Neuroeconomics
Issue of 2010‒11‒06
four papers chosen by

  1. The Influence of the Self-Regulatory Focus on the Effectiveness of Stop-Smoking Campaigns for Young Smokers By L. ADAMS; T. FASEUR; M. GEUENS
  2. Risk Attitudes as an Independent Predictor of Debt By Michael Daly; Liam Delaney; Séamus McManus
  3. Can Targeted, Non-Cognitive Skills Programs Improve Achievement? Evidence from EPIS By Martins, Pedro S.
  4. The additive property of the inconsistency degree in intertemporal decision making through the generalization of psychophysical laws By Natalia Destefano; Alexandre Souto Martinez

    Abstract: People’s self-regulatory focus may determine the effectiveness of stop-smoking campaigns. An experiment with 226 young smokers investigated the persuasiveness of different emotional appeals (fear-relief versus sadness-joy) for different self-regulatory foci (prevention versus promotion). A congruency effect emerges for attitude toward the advertisement and behavioral intentions: Young smokers with a promotion focus are more persuaded by sadness-joy than fear-relief campaigns, and the opposite is true for those with a prevention focus. As predicted by the regulatory relevancy principle, ad involvement mediates this effect.
    Date: 2010–09
  2. By: Michael Daly (UCD Geary Institute,University College Dublin and School of Psychology,Trinity College Dublin); Liam Delaney (UCD Geary Institute,School of Economics and School of Public Health & Population Science,University College Dublin); Séamus McManus (UCD Geary Institute,University College Dublin and School of Business & Economics,Maastricht University)
    Abstract: This paper examines how attitudes to risk relate to other psychological constructs of personality and consideration of future consequences (a proxy for time preferences) and how risk attitudes relate to credit behaviour and debt holdings. There is a small correlation between risk attitudes and consideration of future consequences. As regards personality, risk attitudes are most positively related to extraversion and openness to experience and are negatively related to neuroticism. Risk willingness is a robust predictor of debt holdings even controlling for demographics, personality, consideration of future consequences and other covariates.
    JEL: D81 D12
    Date: 2010–10–28
  3. By: Martins, Pedro S. (Queen Mary, University of London)
    Abstract: EPIS is an original and large private-sector program aimed at improving student achievement and eroding early school leaving at Portuguese state schools. The program first screens students to focus only on those more likely to perform poorly; and then conducts a number of small-group sessions aimed at improving the non-cognitive skills (e.g. study skills, motivation, self-esteem) of the selected students. Our quasi-experimental evidence of the effects of EPIS is drawn from rich longitudinal student data and the different timings in the roll-out of the program, both within and across schools. The results indicate that the program reduced grade retention by at least 10 percentage points and did so in a cost effective way.
    Keywords: student achievement, program evaluation, matched school-student data
    JEL: I20 J08
    Date: 2010–10
  4. By: Natalia Destefano; Alexandre Souto Martinez
    Abstract: Intertemporal decision making involves choices among options whose effects occur at different moments. These choices are influenced not only by the effect of rewards value perception at different moments, but also by the time perception effect. One of the main difficulties that affect standard experiments involving intertemporal choices is the simultaneity of both effects on time discounting. In this paper, we unify the psycophysical laws and discount value functions using the one-parameter exponential and logaritmic functions from nonextensive statistical mechanics. Also, we propose to measure the degree of inconsistency. This quantity allow us to discriminate both effects of time and value perception on discounting process and, by integration, obtain other main quantities like impulsivity and discount functions.
    Date: 2010–10

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