nep-neu New Economics Papers
on Neuroeconomics
Issue of 2016‒02‒12
four papers chosen by

  1. Cognitive Processes of Distributional Preferences: A Response Time Study By Fadong Chen; Urs Fischbacher
  2. Response Time and Click Position: Cheap Indicators of Preferences By Fadong Chen; Urs Fischbacher
  3. Cognitive and non-cognitive skills for the Peruvian labor market : addressing measurement error through latent skills estimations By Cunningham,Wendy; Parra Torrado,Mónica; Sarzosa,Miguel Alonso
  4. Cognitive ability and the effect of strategic uncertainty By Nobuyuki Hanaki; Nicolas Jacquemet; Stéphane Luchini; Adam Zylbersztejn

  1. By: Fadong Chen; Urs Fischbacher
    Abstract: There is ample evidence that people differ considerably in the strength of their social preferences. We identify individual heterogeneity in social motives and selfishness in a series of binary three-person dictator games. Based on this identification, we analyze response time to investigate the cognitive processes of distributional preferences. We find that response time increases with the number of conflicts between individually relevant motives and the difficulty of the decisions. The selfish motive is more intuitive for subjects who are more selfish. This is evidence for both, evidence accumulation models and dual-process theory, and we can show that heterogeneity in preferences is reflected in heterogeneity in the underlying cognitive processes. This shows that it is important to take heterogeneity of preferences into account when investigating the cognitive processes of social decision making.
    Keywords: distributional preferences, cognitive process, response time, heterogeneity
    Date: 2015
  2. By: Fadong Chen; Urs Fischbacher
    Abstract: This paper investigates how process data like response time and click position relates to economic decisions. We use a social value orientation experiment, which can be considered as a prototypical multi-attribute decision problem. We find that in the social value orientation task more individualistic subjects have shorter response times than prosocial subjects. Individualistic subjects click more often on their own payoffs than on the others’ payoffs, and they click more often on their own payoffs than prosocial subjects. These results show that response times and click positions can be used as indicators of people’s preferences.
    Keywords: click position, response time, social preferences, experiment
    Date: 2015
  3. By: Cunningham,Wendy; Parra Torrado,Mónica; Sarzosa,Miguel Alonso
    Abstract: Evidence from developed country data suggests that cognitive and non-cognitive skills contribute to improved labor market outcomes. This paper tests this hypothesis in a developing country by using an individual-level data set from Peru that incorporates modules to measure cognitive and non-cognitive skills. The paper estimates a structural latent model with unobserved heterogeneity to capture full ability rather than just measured skill. It also applies standard ordinary least squares techniques for comparison. The analysis confirms that cognitive and non-cognitive skills are positively correlated with a range of labor market outcomes in Peru. In particular, cognitive skills positively correlate with wages and the probability of being a wage worker, white-collar, and formal worker, with verbal fluency and numeric ability playing particularly strong roles. The results are robust to methodology. The patterns are less uniform for non-cognitive skills. For instance, perseverance of effort (grit) emerges strongly for most outcomes regardless of methodology. However, plasticity?an aggregation of openness to experience and emotional stability?is only correlated with employment, and only when using the structural latent model. The ordinary least squares method also finds that the disaggregated non-cognitive skills of kindness, cooperation, emotional stability, and openness to experience emerge significantly, mostly for the wage estimates. The different results derived from the ordinary least squares and the structural model with latent skills suggest strong measurement bias in most non-cognitive skills measurement. These findings, although only correlational because of the use of a single cross-section, suggest that recent efforts by the Peruvian government to incorporate non-cognitive skill development into the school curriculum are justified.
    Keywords: Education For All,Effective Schools and Teachers,Access&Equity in Basic Education,Educational Sciences,Primary Education
    Date: 2016–02–01
  4. By: Nobuyuki Hanaki (GREDEG - Groupe de Recherche en Droit, Economie et Gestion - UNS - Université Nice Sophia Antipolis - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Nicolas Jacquemet (EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics, CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Stéphane Luchini (GREQAM - Groupement de Recherche en Économie Quantitative d'Aix-Marseille - Université Paul Cézanne - Aix-Marseille 3 - Université de la Méditerranée - Aix-Marseille 2 - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - AMU - Aix-Marseille Université); Adam Zylbersztejn (GATE - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - UL2 - Université Lumière - Lyon 2 - Ecole Normale Supérieure Lettres et Sciences Humaines - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: How is one's cognitive ability related to the way one responds to strategic uncertainty? We address this question by conducting a set of experiments in simple 2 × 2 dominance solvable coordination games. Our experiments involve two main treatments: one in which two human subjects interact, and another in which one human subject interacts with a computer program whose behavior is known. By making the behavior of the computer perfectly predictable, the latter treatment eliminates strategic uncertainty. We find that subjects with higher cognitive ability are more sensitive to strategic uncertainty than those with lower cognitive ability.
    Keywords: Strategic uncertainty,Bounded rationality,Robot,Experiment
    Date: 2015–12

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