New Economics Papers
on Neuroeconomics
Issue of 2014‒01‒24
three papers chosen by

  1. Social Preferences and Lying Aversion in Children By Maggian, Valeria; Villeval, Marie Claire
  2. Looking Ahead: Subjective Time Perception and Individual Time Discounting By W. David Bradford; Paul Dolan; Matteo M. Galizzi
  3. Growth in Within Graduate Wage Inequality: The Role of Subjects, Cognitive Skill Dispersion and Occupational Concentration By Joanne Lindley; Steven McIntosh

  1. By: Maggian, Valeria (University of Milan Bicocca); Villeval, Marie Claire (CNRS, GATE)
    Abstract: While previous research has shown that social preferences develop in childhood, we study whether this development is accompanied by reduced use of deception when lies would harm others, and increased use of deception to benefit others. In a sample of children aged between 7 and 14, we find strong aversion to lying at all ages. Lying is driven mainly by selfish motives and envy. Children with stronger social preferences are less prone to deception, even when lying would benefit others at no monetary cost. Older children lie less than younger children and require more self-justification to lie.
    Keywords: lie aversion, deception, social preferences, children, experiment
    JEL: C91 D03 D63
    Date: 2013–12
  2. By: W. David Bradford; Paul Dolan; Matteo M. Galizzi
    Abstract: Time discounting is at the heart of economic decision-making. We disentangle hyperbolic discounting from subjective time perception using experimental data from incentive-compatible tests to measure time preferences, and a set of experimental tasks to measure time perception. The two behavioural parameters may be related to two factors that affect how we look ahead to future events. The first is that some component of time preferences reflect hyperbolic discounting. The second factor is that non-constant discounting may also be a reflection of subjective time perception: if people's perception of time follows a near logarithmic process (as all other physiological perceptions such as heat, sound, and light do) then all existing estimates of individual discounting will be mis-measured and incorrectly suggest "hyperbolic" discounting, even if discounting over subjective time is constant. To test these hypotheses, we empirically estimate the two distinct behavioural parameter s using data collected from 178 participants to an experiment conducted at the London School of Economics Behavioural Research Lab. The results support the hypothesis that apparent non-constant discounting is largely a reflection of subjective time perception.
    Keywords: Time preferences, Time perception, Hyperbolic discounting
    JEL: D1 D10 D91
    Date: 2014–01
  3. By: Joanne Lindley (Department of Management, Faculty of Social Science and Public Policy, King’s College); Steven McIntosh (Department of Economics, The University of Sheffield)
    Abstract: UK graduate wage inequality has increased over the previous three decades. This paper demonstrates that most of the growth has occurred within degree subjects, with the largest occurring in non-STEM subjects. The paper therefore investigates two potential explanations. The first is the increase in the variance of childhood cognitive test scores amogst graduates in the same subject. This increase differs across subjects, and is again in the non-STEM subjects where the variance of test scores has increased the most, especially during the second period of rapid higher education expansion in the 1990s. The second potential explanation explored is the fall in the occupational concentration of subjects. Graduates of some subjects (like Medicine and Education) are highly concentrated into only a few jobs whereas others are much more widely dispersed. Generally, all subjects have become more widely dispersed across occupations over time, but some more so than others. The paper then shows that both of these factors have played a role in explaining growing graduate wage inequality within subjects, though the largest is by far from the widening in the variance of test scores. The path of graduate wage inequality would have been relatively flat without the accompanying increase in the variance of cognitive skills.
    Keywords: wage inequality; subject of degree; graduates
    JEL: J2 J24 J31
    Date: 2014

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