nep-neu New Economics Papers
on Neuroeconomics
Issue of 2016‒09‒04
three papers chosen by

  1. Lost in Transition: The Influence of Locus of Control on Delaying Educational Decisions By Katharina Jaik; Stefan C. Wolter
  2. The Curious Relation Between Theory of Mind and Sharing in Preschool Age Children By Anya Samek; Daniel Houser; John List
  3. Capabilities and Skills By Chase O. Corbin; James J. Heckman

  1. By: Katharina Jaik (Department of Business Administration, University of Zurich); Stefan C. Wolter (University of Bern; Swiss Coordination Center for Research in Education; CESifo and IZA)
    Abstract: The transition from compulsory schooling to upper-secondary education is a crucial and frequently difficult step in the educational career of young people. In this study, we analyze the impact of one non-cognitive skill, locus of control, on the intention and the decision to delay the transition into post-compulsory education in Switzerland. We find that locus of control, measured at ages 13–14, has a significant impact on the intention to delay the transition into upper-secondary education. Furthermore, we find that the intention to delay the transition is strongly correlated with the actual delay, measured one and a half years after the intention. Finally, students with the initial intention to delay but successfully continuing into upper-secondary education show a stronger internal locus of control than comparable students who do delay their transition.
    Keywords: Locus of control, school-to-school transition
    JEL: I21 J24
    Date: 2016–08
  2. By: Anya Samek; Daniel Houser; John List
    Abstract: Young children have long been known to act selfishly and gradually appear to become more generous across middle childhood. While this apparent change has been well documented, the underlying mechanisms supporting this remain unclear. The current study examined the role of early theory of mind and executive functioning in facilitating sharing in a large sample (N = 98) of preschoolers. Results reveal a curious relation between early false-belief understanding and sharing behavior. Contrary to many commonsense notions and predominant theories, competence in this ability is actually related to less sharing. Thus, the relation between developing theory of mind and sharing may not be as straightforward as it seems in preschool age children. It is precisely the children who can engage in theory of mind that decide to share less with others.
    Date: 2015
  3. By: Chase O. Corbin (University of Chicago); James J. Heckman (The University of Chicago)
    Abstract: This paper discusses the relevance of recent research on the economics of human development to the work of the Human Development and Capability Association. The recent economics of human development brings insights about the dynamics of skill accumulation to the literature on capabilities. Skills embodied in agents empower people. Enhanced skills enhance opportunities and hence promote capabilities. We address measurement problems common to both the economics of human development and the capability approach. The economics of human development analyzes the dynamics of preference formation, but is silent about which preferences should be used to evaluate alternative policies. This is both a strength and a limitation of the approach.
    Keywords: skills, capabilities, freedom, technology of skill formation
    JEL: D04 D31 D63 I31
    Date: 2016–08

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