nep-neu New Economics Papers
on Neuroeconomics
Issue of 2023‒07‒31
three papers chosen by

  1. Confessions of a pirate: Gender difference in survey prime to increase honest reporting By Kate Whitman; Zahra Murad; Joe Cox
  2. Effectuation and causation models: an integrative theoretical framework By Margot Racat; Antonin Ricard; René Mauer
  3. Human Creativity: Functions, Mechanisms and Social Conditioning By De Dreu, Carsten; Nijstad, Bernard A.; Baas, Matthijs

  1. By: Kate Whitman (University of Portsmouth); Zahra Murad (University of Portsmouth); Joe Cox (University of Portsmouth)
    Abstract: Survey data is essential for marketing and scientific research. However, recent evidence suggests that men and women may underreport undesirable behavior to different degrees and for different motivations, making it difficult for marketers to trust consumer data. Two survey experiments were conducted to test priming effects aimed at minimizing social desirability bias, hypothesizing a gender difference in efficacy. Using digital piracy as an example of an underreported behavior, Study 1 shows that a positive cues condition, which is designed to provide respondents with convenient rationalizations, increases undesirable behavior reporting. Negative primes have a greater inhibitory effect on men’s reporting of undesirable behavior compared to women’s, thus reversing the gender reporting gap. Study 2 explores the relationship between measured social desirability bias, positive cues, and gender. We find that the treatment has the strongest effect on men and only significantly affects participants with high social desirability bias. When considering both studies (N = 1, 734) we estimate that the positive cues treatment increases the amount of piracy participants are willing to report by 42%. Market researchers are recommended to add positive cues before questions about undesirable behavior, especially in the case of men. Furthermore, sequential undesirable behavior questions are likely to increasingly inhibit men’s reporting, suggesting that market researchers should randomize these sensitive questions.
    Keywords: Social Desirability Bias; Digital Piracy; Survey Primes; Cognitive Dissonance; Moral Decision Making; Response Bias; Survey Methodology
    JEL: C83
    Date: 2023–07–12
  2. By: Margot Racat (IDRAC Business School - Ecole supérieure de commerce); Antonin Ricard (CERGAM - Centre d'Études et de Recherche en Gestion d'Aix-Marseille - AMU - Aix Marseille Université - UTLN - Université de Toulon, AMU IAE - Institut d'Administration des Entreprises (IAE) - Aix-en-Provence - AMU - Aix Marseille Université); René Mauer (Jean-Baptiste Institute for Entrepreneurship ESCP Business School Berlin)
    Abstract: The realm of entrepreneurship has seen a rise in research on effectuation from the perspective of cognition, which has sparked significant discussion among academics due to a lack of well-defined theoretical foundations. However, despite this interest in cognitive theories, the grounded cognition theory has not been adequately explored to explain the behavior of entrepreneurs. Accordingly, we propose an integrative theoretical framework for the effectuation and causation models in light of an offloading process. This process helps to explain the relationship between the entrepreneur's cognitive antecedents and their behavioral outcomes. Consequently, our study provides theoretical underpinnings for effectuation and a better understanding of how effectuation and causation models are alternatingly engaged during the entrepreneur's decision-making process.
    Keywords: Legitimacy, Effectuation, Causation, Grounded Cognition Theory, Offloading, Entrepreneur
    Date: 2023–06–14
  3. By: De Dreu, Carsten; Nijstad, Bernard A. (University of Groningen); Baas, Matthijs
    Abstract: Creativity is part and parcel of human history and enables (groups of) individuals to adapt to and shape their natural and social surroundings. Here we identify (1) core functions of creativity (“what is it for?”) in terms of its ability to solve ill-defined problems of survival and prosperity and, (2) the neurocognitive mechanisms (“how does it work?”) underlying creative production in terms of cognitive persistence and flexibility. We summarize experimental support for this Dual Pathway to Creativity Model (DPCM) from our own laboratory and that of others, and review work implicating the dopamine-innervated fronto-striatal circuitry in achieving a balance between cognitive flexibility on the one hand, and persistence on the other. We use DPCM to analyze how creativity emerges and develops across the lifespan. We show (3) how personalities and psychopathologies marked by approach (avoidance) motivation link to creativity because of enhanced capacity for flexibility (persistence), and (4) how socio-cultural factors, including psychological safety, diversity, and leadership, condition individual and group creativity. We conclude with open questions for future research, including how (5) individuals and groups move from generating to implementing creative ideas, insights, and problem solutions.
    Date: 2023–06–10

General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.