nep-neu New Economics Papers
on Neuroeconomics
Issue of 2014‒09‒29
five papers chosen by

  1. Effects of stress on economic decision-making: Evidence from laboratory experiments By Delaney, Liam; Fink, Günther; Harmon, Colm
  2. The effect of personality traits on subject choice and performance in high school By Silvia Mendolia; Ian Walker
  3. Wishful Thinking By Guy Mayraz
  4. Emotional and Social Intelligence and Leadership Development in the Higher Education. An exploratory study By Fabrizio Gerli; Sara Bonesso; Anna Comacchio; Claudio Pizzi
  5. Cognitive and Socioemotional Skills and Wages: The role of latent abilities on the gender wage gap in Peru By Pablo Lavado; Luciana Velarde; Gustavo Yamada

  1. By: Delaney, Liam; Fink, Günther; Harmon, Colm
    Abstract: The ways in which preferences respond to the varying stress of economic environments is a key question for behavioral economics and public policy. We conducted a laboratory experiment to investigate the effects of stress on financial decision making among individuals aged 50 and older. Using the cold pressor task as a physiological stressor, and a series of intelligence tests as cognitive stressors, we find that stress increases subjective discounting rates, has no effect on the degree of risk-aversion, and substantially lowers the effort individuals make to learn about financial decisions.
    Keywords: stress, financial decisions, discounting, risk aversion, learning,
    Date: 2014
  2. By: Silvia Mendolia; Ian Walker
    Abstract: This paper investigates the relationship between personality traits in adolescence and performance in high school using a large and recent cohort study. In particular, we investigate the impact of locus of control, self-esteem, and work ethics at age 15, on test scores at age 16, and on subject choices and subsequent performance at age 17-18. In particular, individuals with external locus of control or with low levels of self-esteem seem less likely to have good performance in test scores at age 16 and to pursue further studies at 17-18, especially in mathematics or science. We use matching methods to control for a rich set of adolescent and family characteristics and we find that personality traits do affect study choices and performance in test scores - particularly in mathematics and science. We explore the robustness of our results using the methodology proposed by Altonji et al. (2005) that consists in making hypotheses about the correlation between the unobservables that determine test scores and subjects’ choices and the unobservables that influence personality.
    Date: 2014
  3. By: Guy Mayraz
    Abstract: This paper presents a model and an experiment, both suggesting that wishful thinking is a pervasive phenomenon that aect decisions large and small. Agents in the model start out with state-dependent payos, and behave as if high-payo states are more likely. Subsequent choices maximize subjective-expected utility given these beliefs. Subjects in the experiment were paid in accordance with the future value of a nancial asset. Despite incentives for hedging, subjects gaining from high prices made higher predictions than subjects gaining from low prices. Comparative statics agreed with predictions. In particular, a large bonus for accurate predictions did not result in a smaller bias.
    Keywords: wishful thinking, optimism, pessimism, cognitive dissonance,
    JEL: D01 D03 D80 D81 D83 D84 G11
    Date: 2013
  4. By: Fabrizio Gerli; Sara Bonesso; Anna Comacchio; Claudio Pizzi
    Abstract: Our study aims to contribute to the literature on leadership development through the lifespan, by providing an empirical evidence of the dynamic processes related to leadership development in early stages. This research advances the understanding on how higher education institutions can introduce a systematic approach to support leadership identity formation and self-regulation as primary outcome of leadership development process, by taking into account that individuals may undertake different developmental trajectories. We suggest that the implementation of the Intentional Change Theory in the academic context, which aims to help students to attain their desired professional future and to increase their self-awareness, could support leadership identity formation. Through the case study of the CaÕ Foscari Competency Centre (CFCC) of University of Venice (Italy), we discuss how the process of early identity formation and regulation of two groups of students, who have expressed a different intent about their job, may differ. Findings show some differences in the values and in the competency portfolio between the two groups of students. These differences suggest two different developmental trajectories of students aiming at an entrepreneurial career and students who expressed a different intent.
    Keywords: Emotional and social intelligence competencies; Intentional change theory; Higher education; Leadership identity formation and self-regulation.
    JEL: I23 J24 M12 M51 M53
    Date: 2014–08
  5. By: Pablo Lavado (Universidad  del Pacífico); Luciana Velarde (Universidad  del Pacífico); Gustavo Yamada (Universidad  del Pacífico)
    Abstract: Literature provides evidence on the positive connection between cognitive test scores and higher wages. Fewer and newer papers have explored the correlation between socioemotional test scores and wages. However, attention is focused on developed countries. Test scores suffer two limitations. First, they can be considered outcomes of the schooling level and latent (unobserved) cognitive and socioemotional abilities. Second, they are potentially measured with error. The main objective of this paper is to identify latent abilities and explore their role in the gender wage gap in a developing country: Peru. The main identification strategy relies on exploring panel data information on test scores and arguing that time dependence across measures is due to latent abilities. We exploit two databases Young Lives Study and the Peruvian Skills and Labor Market Survey (ENHAB). Young Lives has panel data information on test scores and ENHAB has cross-sectional information on test scores and wages. Results show that when accounting for differences in actual latent ability socioemotional abilities account for important inter-gender differences in the endowment and returns of abilities. Moreover, inter-gender differences in latent abilities play an important role not only in wage profiles, but in schooling, employment and occupation decisions.
    Date: 2014–08

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