John Horowitz, John A List, Kenneth E McConnell
Cited by*: 2 Downloads*: 14

The notion of diminishing marginal value had a profound impact on the development of neoclassical theory. Early neoclassical scholars had difficulty convincing contemporaries of the new paradigm's value until political economists used the critical assumption of diminishing marginal value to link utility and demand. While diminishing marginal value remains a key component of modern economic intuition, there is little direct verification of this behavioral property. This paper reports experiments on a myriad of subject pools to examine behavior in both price and exchange settings. We report results from nearly 900 subjects across 19 treatments and find strong evidence of diminishing marginal value.
Rocco Caferra, Roberto Dell'Anno, Andrea Morone
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This paper aims to unmask the inadequacy of the review process of a sample of fee-charging journals in economics. We submitted a bait-manuscript to 104 academic economic journals to test whether there is a difference in the peer-review process between Article Processing Charges (APC) journals and Traditional journals which do not require a publication fee. The submitted bait-article was based on completely made-up data, with evident errors in terms of methodology, literature, reporting of results, and quality of language. Nevertheless, about half of the APC journals fell in the trap. Their editors accepted the article in the journals and required to pay the publication fee. We conclude that the Traditional model has a more effective incentive-mechanism in selecting articles, based on quality standards. Otherwise, we confirm that the so-called "Predatory Journals" - i.e. academic journals which accept papers without a quality check - exploit the APC scheme to increase their profits. They are also able to enter whitelists (e.g. Scopus, COPE). Accordingly, poor-quality articles published on APC journals shed the lights on the weakness of methodologies based on a mechanical inclusion of academic journals in scientific database indexes, succeeding in being considered for bibliometric evaluations of research institutions or scholars' productivity.
Andrea Morone, Paola Tiranzoni
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This study presents an analysis of hypothetical bias in WTA valuation connected with a bargaining game setting, in a field experiment context. The field of the experiment is the History Channel television "Pawn Stars". We collected a unique dataset that allowed us to analyze not only the gap between real and hypothetical WTA but also how they affect the bargaining game and vice versa. The general aim of this paper is to study the hypothetical bias related to subjects' WTA, and the factors that mostly affect it. The main results, of our paper, show that the hypothetical bias is positive, and it depends mainly on the price range and the type of good.
Peter Bohm
Cited by*: 3 Downloads*: 16

The robust laboratory evidence of preference reversal for lotteries has been interpreted as a threat to the general vailidity of standard theories of decision-making under uncertainty. This evidence is obtained from laboratory, that is, not real-world, lotteries with subjects who have not sought to make decisions among such lotteries. Here, the prevalence of preference reversal is studied in a field experiment with used cars, that is, a case of real-world non-trivial, non-lottery - but still payoff-uncertain - choice objects, and with subjects who registered as potential buyers of such cars. No sign of preference reversal was observed.
John A List, David Lucking-Reiley
Cited by*: 12 Downloads*: 9

Whether rationality of economic behavior increases with expected payoffs and decreases with the cognitive cost it takes to formulate an optimal strategy remains an open question. We explore these issues with field data, using individual bids from sealed-bid auctions in which we sold nearly $10,000 worth of sportscards. Our results indicate that stakes do indeed matter, as high-priced ($70) cards produced more of the theoretically predicted strategic behavior than did lower-priced ($3) cards. We find additional evidence consistent with the importance of cognitive costs, as subjects more experienced with sportscard auctions exhibited a greater tendency to behave strategically than did less experienced bidders.
Douglas Dyer, John H Kagel
Cited by*: 7 Downloads*: 29

Experienced construction industry executives suffer from a winner's curse in laboratory common value auction markets (Dyer et al. [Dyer, D., J. H. Kagel, D. Levin. 1989. A comparison of naive and experienced bidders in common value offer auctions: Laboratory analysis. Econom. J. 99 108-115.]). This paper identifies essential differences between field environments and the economic theory underlying the laboratory markets that account for the executives' success in the field and a winner's curse in the lab. These are (1) industry-specific mechanisms which enable contractors to escape the winner's curse even when they bid too low, (2) learned, industry-specific evaluative processes which enable experienced contractors to avoid the winner's curse in the first place, and (3) important private value elements that underlie bidding. Also identified are a number of industry-specific bidding characteristics whose evolution can be explained using modern auction theory. Lessons are drawn regarding the use of experimental methods in economics.
John A List, Jason F Shogren
Cited by*: 19 Downloads*: 20

This paper calibrates real and hypothetical willingness-to-accept estimates elicited for consumer goods in a multi-unit, random nth-price auction. Using a within-subject experimental design, we find that people understated their real willingness to accept in the hypothetical regimes, framed both as demand and non-demand revealing. After controlling for personspecific effects, however, hypothetical and real statements are equivalent on the margin.
David Ong
Cited by*: 0 Downloads*: 7

A large body of chiefly laboratory research has attempted to demonstrate that people can exhibit choice-averse behavior from cognitive overload when faced with many options. However, meta-analyses of these studies, which are generally of one or two product lines, reveal conflicting results. Findings of choice-averse behavior are balanced by findings of choice-loving behavior. Unexplored is the possibility that many consumers may purchase to reveal their tastes for unfamiliar products, rather than attempt to forecast their tastes before purchase. I model such ‘sampling-search’ behavior and predict that the purchases of unfamiliar consumers increase with the available number of varieties for popular/mainstream product lines and decrease for niche product lines. To test these predictions, I develop a measure of popularity based on a survey of 1,440 shoppers for their preferences over 24 product lines with 339 varieties at a large supermarket in China. 35,694 shoppers were video recorded after the varieties they faced on shelves were randomly reduced. As found in the meta-studies, choice-averse behavior was balanced by choice-loving behavior. However, as predicted, the probability of choice-loving behavior increases with the number of available varieties for popular product lines, whereas choice-averse behavior increases with available varieties for niche product lines. These findings suggest that increasing the number of varieties has predictable opposing effects on sales, depending upon the popularity of the product line, and opens the possibility of reconciling apparently conflicting prior results.
John A List, Anya Samek, Dana L Suskind
Cited by*: 0 Downloads*: 258

Behavioral economics and field experiments within the social sciences have advanced well beyond academic curiosum. Governments around the globe as well as the most powerful firms in modern economies employ staffs of behavioralists and experimentalists to advance and test best practices. In this study, we combine behavioral economics with field experiments to reimagine a new model of early childhood education. Our approach has three distinct features. First, by focusing public policy dollars on prevention rather than remediation, we call for much earlier educational programs than currently conceived. Second, our approach has parents at the center of the education production function rather than at its periphery. Third, we advocate attacking the macro education problem using a public health methodology, rather than focusing on piecemeal advances.
Glenn W Harrison, John A List
Cited by*: 0 Downloads*: 6

No abstract available