nep-neu New Economics Papers
on Neuroeconomics
Issue of 2019‒08‒12
four papers chosen by

  1. Happy to Take Some Risk: Investigating the Dependence of Risk Preferences on Mood Using Biometric Data By Kassas, Bachir; Palma, Marco A.; Porter, Maria
  2. Long Run Effects of Universal Childcare on Personality Traits By Maximilian Bach; Josefine Koebe; Frauke H. Peter
  3. The Role of Locus of Control in Education, Occupation, Income and Healthy Habits: Evidence from Australian Twins By Xue, Sen; Kidd, Michael P.; Le, Anh T.; Kirk, Kathy; Martin, Nicholas G.
  4. The Effect of Social Information in the Dictator Game with a Taking Option By Tanya O’Garra; Valerio Capraro; Praveen Kujal

  1. By: Kassas, Bachir; Palma, Marco A.; Porter, Maria
    Keywords: Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies
    Date: 2019–06–25
  2. By: Maximilian Bach; Josefine Koebe; Frauke H. Peter
    Abstract: Although universal childcare has become an essential tool to support child development, few economic studies analyze its effects on non-cognitive skills and little is known about causal effects on these skills in the long run. In this paper we go beyond short run analyses and examine the long run effects of one additional year of universal childcare on students’ personality traits in adolescence. We focus on personality traits as part of their non-cognitive skills set and as important predictors of later educational achievements. As of 1996, a legal entitlement to universal childcare applied to children of three years and older in Germany. However, severe shortages in the former-West meant that many children could not get a childcare place and had to wait a full year until the next entry date. Using data from the National Educational Panel Study (NEPS) we estimate effects of one additional year of childcare by exploiting geographical variation in the timing of childcare entry arising from local supply constraints. We find that an earlier entry in universal childcare increases extroversion in adolescence, which has been shown to be associated with favorable labor market outcomes.
    Keywords: early childcare, non-cognitive skills, personality traits
    JEL: I21 J13 J18 J24
    Date: 2019
  3. By: Xue, Sen; Kidd, Michael P.; Le, Anh T.; Kirk, Kathy; Martin, Nicholas G.
    Abstract: The role of non-cognitive skills in socio-economic behavior is a burgeoning research area in economics. Much interest is focused on the personality trait, locus of control, a measure of the extent to which individuals believe their fate is self-determined. The existing empirical literature generally estimates the role of locus of control via OLS. The legitimacy of the approach relies upon stability of locus of control as well as the correct specification of the model, i.e. no omitted variable bias. Recent evidence is supportive of treating locus of control as predetermined, particularly for working age individuals. However, the behavioural genetics consensus is that personality traits including locus of control have a significant heritability component. This suggests the potential for omitted variable problems associated with the prior literature’s attempt to identify the impact of locus of control using cross-sectional methods. We address the issue of omitted shared family background and genetic factors using data on both monozygotic and dizygotic twins to examine the role of locus of control. Comparison of results across OLS and twins fixed effect estimators is consistent with substantial upward bias in previous estimates of the locus of the control due to omitted variable problems.
    Keywords: Locus of control,twin studies,socioeconomic outcomes
    JEL: J24 J21 J31
    Date: 2019
  4. By: Tanya O’Garra (Middlesex University London); Valerio Capraro (Middlesex University London); Praveen Kujal (Middlesex University London and Economic Science Institute, Chapman University)
    Abstract: We experimentally study how redistribution choices are affected by positive and negative information regarding the behaviour of a previous participant in a dictator game with a taking option. We use the strategy method to identify behavioural ‘types’, and thus distinguish ‘conformists’ from ‘counter-conformists’, and unconditional choosers. Unconditional choosers make up the greatest proportion of types (about 80%) while only about 20% of subjects condition their responses to social information. We find that both conformity and counter-conformity are driven by a desire to be seen as moral (the ‘symbolization’ dimension of moral identity). The main difference is that, conformity is also driven by a sensitivity to what others think (‘attention to social comparison’). Unconditional giving (about 30% of players) on the other hand is mainly driven by the centrality of moral identity to the self (the ‘internalization' dimension of moral identity). Social information thus seems to mainly affect those who care about being seen to be moral. The direction of effect however depends on how sensitive one is to what others think.
    Keywords: dictator game with ‘taking’; social information; conformity; anti-conformity; heterogeneity; redistribution
    JEL: C91 C72 D31 D64 D91
    Date: 2019

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