nep-neu New Economics Papers
on Neuroeconomics
Issue of 2017‒04‒09
two papers chosen by
Daniel Houser
George Mason University

  1. Mindreading and Endogenous Beliefs in Games By Lauren Larrouy; Guilhem Lecouteux
  2. An Investigation into the Smithian System of Sympathy: from Cognition to Emotion By Laurie Bréban

  1. By: Lauren Larrouy (GREDEG - Groupe de Recherche en Droit, Economie et Gestion - UNS - Université Nice Sophia Antipolis - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Guilhem Lecouteux (GREDEG - Groupe de Recherche en Droit, Economie et Gestion - UNS - Université Nice Sophia Antipolis - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: We argue that a Bayesian explanation of strategic choices in games requires introducing a psychological theory of belief formation. We highlight that beliefs in epistemic game theory are derived from the actual choice of the players, and cannot therefore explain why Bayesian rational players should play the strategy they actually chose. We introduce the players’ capacity of mindreading in a game theoretical framework with the simulation theory, and characterise the beliefs that Bayes rational players could endogenously form in games. We show in particular that those beliefs need not be ratifiable, and therefore that rational players can form action-dependent beliefs.
    Keywords: action-dependent beliefs, simulation, prior beliefs, mindreading, choice under uncertainty
    Date: 2017–02–16
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:hal:wpaper:halshs-01469136&r=neu
  2. By: Laurie Bréban (PHARE - Philosophie, Histoire et Analyse des Représentations Economiques - UNIVERSITE PARIS 1 PANTHEON-SORBONNE - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: The paper aims to offer a characterization of Adam Smith's concept of sympathy. After having made it explicit that Smithian sympathy, strictly speaking, possesses an emotional content, it is shown, in the first section of the paper, that it relies on a complex cognitive process (the “imaginary change of situation”) which enables one to conceive of others’ sentiments. Of course, Smith’s aim, with his system of sympathy, was not to explain how we manage to conceive of others’ feelings but rather how we come to be affected by them. This cognitive process constitutes, therefore, just one step, the next step being to highlight how we move from the cognitive to the emotional realm. It is argued that such a movement relies on the concept of “force of conception” which allows for our conception of others’ feelings to give rise to an emotion being experienced that is related to others’ situations. In the second section, the paper offers a characterization of the emotional result that arises from Smith’s imaginary change of situation. We do so by highlighting the influence of the cognitive realm on the emotional realm, through the role of the force of conception. After having highlighted two properties of Smith’s imaginary change of situation it is shown that it systematically leads the spectator to feel an emotion distinct from the one felt by the person with whom he identifies.
    Keywords: Adam Smith,Sympathy,Cognition,Emotion,David Hume,beliefs
    Date: 2017–02–14
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:hal:wpaper:hal-01467340&r=neu

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