nep-neu New Economics Papers
on Neuroeconomics
Issue of 2013‒08‒16
three papers chosen by
Daniel Houser
George Mason University

  1. Gender Differences in Cognition in China and Reasons for Change over Time: Evidence from CHARLS By Lei, Xiaoyan; Smith, James P.; Sun, Xiaoting; Zhao, Yaohui
  2. Cooperation and Personality By Proto, Eugenio
  3. Reciprocity as an individual difference By Kurt A. Ackermann; Jürgen Fleiß; Ryan O. Murphy

  1. By: Lei, Xiaoyan (Peking University); Smith, James P. (RAND); Sun, Xiaoting (Peking University); Zhao, Yaohui (Peking University)
    Abstract: In this paper, we model gender differences in cognitive ability in China using a new sample of middle-aged and older Chinese respondents. Modeled after the American Health and Retirement Survey (HRS), CHARLS respondents are 45 years and older and are nationally representative of the Chinese population in this age span. Our measures of cognition in CHARLS relies on two measures that proxy for different dimensions of adult cognition – episodic memory and intact mental status. We relate these cognitive measures to adult health and SES outcomes during the adult years. We find large cognitive differences to the detriment of women that were mitigated by large gender differences in education among these generations of Chinese people. These gender differences in cognition are especially concentrated in the older age groups and poorer communities within the sample. We also investigated historical, geographical, and cultural characteristics of communities to understand how they impact cognition. Economic development and environmental improvement such as having electricity, increase in wage per capita and green coverage ratio generally contribute to higher cognition ability. Women benefit more from the fruits of development – electricity and growth of green coverage ratio are conducive to lessening female disadvantage in cognition.
    Keywords: China, cognition
    JEL: H10
    Date: 2013–07
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7536&r=neu
  2. By: Proto, Eugenio (University of Warwick)
    Abstract: Cooperating and trusting behavior may be explained by preferences over social outcomes (people care about others, are unselfish and help- ful), or attitudes to work and social responsibilities (plans have to be carried out, norms have to be followed). If the first hypothesis is true, Agreeable- ness, reporting stated empathy for others, should matter most; if the second, higher score in traits expressing attitude to work, intrinsic motivation (Con- scientiousness) should be correlated with cooperating behavior and trust. We find experimental support for the second hypothesis when subjects provide real mental effort in two treatments with identical task, differing by whether others' payment is affected.
    Keywords: Personality Traits, Cooperation, Effort Provision
    Date: 2013
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:cge:warwcg:142&r=neu
  3. By: Kurt A. Ackermann (Chair of Decision Theory and Behavioral Game Theory, ETH Zurich); Jürgen Fleiß (Institute of Statistics and Operations Research, Karl-Franzens-University Graz); Ryan O. Murphy (Chair of Decision Theory and Behavioral Game Theory, ETH Zurich)
    Abstract: There is accumulating evidence that decision makers are sensitive to the distribution of resources among themselves and others, beyond what is expected from the predictions of narrow self-interest. These social preferences are typically conceptualized as being static and existing independently of information about the other people influenced by a DM’s allocation choices. In this paper we consider the reactivity of a decision makers’s social preferences in response to information about the intentions or past behavior of the person to be affected by the decision maker’s allocation choices (i.e., how do social preferences change in relation to the other’s type). This paper offers a conceptual framework for characterizing the link between distributive preferences and reciprocity, and reports on experiments in which these two constructs are disentangled and the relation between the two is characterized.
    Date: 2013–08–06
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:grz:wpsses:2013-05&r=neu

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