» ESI Lecture Series, sponsored by IFREE
+ - 2015-2016 Lecture Guests
Abstract: Motivating innovation is important in many incentive problems. This research shows that the optimal innovation-motivating incentive scheme exhibits substantial tolerance (or even reward) for early failure and reward for long-term success. Moreover, commitment to a long-term compensation plan, job security, and timely feedback on performance are essential to motivate innovation. In a controlled laboratory setting, we provide evidence for the theory. The most recent laboratory experiment studies the impact of timely feedback on creativity and innovation.
Bio: Gustavo Manso is the William A. and Betty H. Hasler Chair in New Enterprise Development and Associate Professor of Finance at Berkeley-Haas. He earned a Ph.D. in Finance from Stanford Graduate School of Business in 2006. His research interests are in corporate finance, contract theory, economics of organizations, and entrepreneurship. Much of his research focuses on incentives for innovation in organizations. For example, he has recently examined how managerial compensation affects innovation activity and how the structure of scientific research funding influences breakthrough discoveries.
Abstract: How malleable are preferences over short time horizons and in what ways do preferences change? In the laboratory, we estimate the effects of prior exertion of self-control, consumption of a sugared drink, and consumption of a placebo drink on intertemporal monetary choice. All three treatments increase savings among subjects with lower cognitive ability. To understand these results, we estimate the effects of the treatments on the three parameters of a simple decision utility model. All treatments primarily affect utility curvature, with smaller effects on present bias. These two parameters are closely correlated within individuals, in that increased utility curvature corresponds to more present bias. We argue that these patterns are best explained by a treatment effect on income-as-consumption error.
Bio: Peter Kuhn's recent research interests include behavioral and personnel economics, discrimination, migration, China's labor markets, and the role of the internet as a labor market matchmaker. His research has been funded by the NSF, NIH and Ford Foundation, among others. He is a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), and the Center for Economic Studies (CES). He currently serves on the editorial board of AEJ: Applied and Labour Economics. Kuhn is Associate Editor of the Industrial and Labor Relations Review and directs UCSB’s Broom Demography Center.
February 26, 2016, Katya Sherstyuk, Ph.D. - Bidding with money or action plans? Asset allocation under strategic uncertainty
Abstract: We study, theoretically and experimentally, alternative mechanisms to allocate assets when the future value of the asset is unknown at the time of allocation because of strategic uncertainty. We compare auctions, or bidding with money, for the right to play the minimum effort coordination game, with bidding with action (effort) proposals, where bidders with the highest proposed actions are selected as winners. Provided that the bidders commit to their proposals, bidding with action proposals eliminates strategic uncertainly and is characterized by unique fully efficient Nash equilibrium. Allowing to revise action proposals after the assets are allocated admits both informative fully efficient, and uninformative babbling equilibria. In the experiment, bidding with action proposals with commitment consistently leads to the efficient outcome, whereas without commitment, both fully efficient and inefficient outcomes are observed. Auctioning off the right to play leads to higher actions than under random allocation, but is characterized by significant overbidding and winner losses. We further experimentally compare the mechanisms in their ability to train the players to achieve and sustain efficient coordination even after the allocation mechanism changes.
Bio: Katerina Sherstyuk is a professor of economics at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She received her PhD in Social Sciences from the California Institute of Technology in 1995. Before joining the University of Hawaii, she taught at the University of Melbourne, Australia. Her research interests include experimental economics, game theory and mechanism design.
March 02, 2016, Jeanine Miklos-Thal, Ph.D. - Making Sense of Restrictions on Online Sales
Abstract: This paper considers a vertical-contracting game between a supplier and competing retailers that sell both online and in brick-and-mortar outlets. We find that the supplier cannot achieve full channel coordination with standard supply contracts that depend on the total quantity ordered by a retailer. Our analysis offers a simple explanation for vertical contracts that impose limits on the percentage of internet sales in the total sales made by a retailer.
Bio: Professor Miklos-Thal’s research focuses on analytical modeling of strategic interactions between firms and consumers. Her main areas of expertise are (i) antitrust economics, with a focus on vertical restraints and collusion, and (ii) the implications of reputational concerns for decision-making. Miklos-Thal’s research has been published in leading economics and management journals, including the Journal of the European Economic Association, Management Science, the RAND Journal of Economics, the Economic Journal, the Journal of Marketing Research, Games and Economic Behavior, and Economic Theory. Prior to joining the Simon School, Miklos-Thal taught at the University of Mannheim, Germany.
March 11, 2016, Nageeb Ali, Ph.D. - Image Versus Information: Changing Societal Norms and Optimal Privacy
Abstract: This paper describes the costs and benefits of using social image and stigma to promote good behavior. We formalize a simple principle: publicizing actions of individuals fosters cooperation but impedes information aggregation. We study a Principal seeking to motivate image-conscious agents to contribute to a public good. Each of the agents and Principal privately observes noisy information about the quality of the public good. Each agent chooses how much to contribute based on his own mix of public-spiritedness and reputational concern for appearing prosocial. The Principal can amplify or dampen these reputational payoffs by making individual behavior more or less visible to the community (e.g. by stigmatizing low contributions and praising high contributions). Upon observing aggregate contributions, the Principal can contribute to the public good herself. Publicizing contributions leaves her with a smaller burden in achieving op- timal public good provision, but endogenously, bears an informational cost: because she knows neither the social value of the public good nor how much agents care about their reputations, she cannot perfectly infer whether contributions are motivated by the quality of the public good or image-seeking behavior. We study how she optimally resolves this tradeoff, and how this optimal degree of publicity varies with the primitives of our framework. We show in particular that in a fast-changing society (greater variability in the “fundamental” or the image-motivated component of average preferences), privacy should be greater than in a more static one. Our results highlight, in the context of legal policymaking, how what people do (the “descriptive norm” may be a poor indicator of what they value (the “prescriptive norm”) when individual decisions are publicized.
Bio: S. Nageeb Ali is an Associate Professor of Economics at Penn State. He received his Ph.D. in Economics from Stanford University. His research interests are in economic theory, political economy, and behavioral economics. He is broadly interested in using economic theory to understand the dynamics of social norms and collective choice. He currently serves on the editorial board of the American Economic Review, and is a regular visitor to Microsoft Research.
March 18, 2016, Matt McCarter, Ph.D. - It’s a Trap! Theory Triangulation of Self-Restraint and Population Growth in the 18th Century Swedish Commons
Abstract: The current research uses theory triangulation to examine competing hypotheses about self-restraint and population growth. The research setting is 18th century Sweden (1753 to 1800) where the strong majority of its population had no education and dwelled in an impoverished village commons. We operationalize self-restraint as entering into marriage and the (un-)married fertility rate of the nation – both of which impact the chances of straining the commons. Because the preservation and international trade of food were almost nil in 18th century Sweden, the primary explanatory variable is the previous year’s harvest quality. The “social-trap hypothesis” assumes that the commons villagers incur the brunt of costs from rearing a child, and subsequently predicts that individual families will enter into marriage and produce children regardless of the quality of the previous year’s harvests. Conversely, the “individual-trap hypothesis” assumes that the individual family carriers the brunt of costs of rearing their child, and subsequently predicts that individuals’ entering into marriage and producing children will rise and fall in response to whether the previous year’s harvest was good or poor. Time-series analysis finds support for the individual-trap perspective of population control in a village commons even after controlling for the health, mortality, wars, and political regime.
Bio: Matthew’s primary research interest is managerial decision making with a particular interest in social dilemmas and collaboration problems in organizational settings. He bridges scholarly conversations by teaming with scholars in a variety of fields – e.g. organizational behavior, operations management, strategic management, economics, experimental economics, managerial economics, finance, behavioral finance, healthcare management, quantitative psychology, social psychology, and geography – to study strategies that organizations and other collectives may employ to increase effective decision making, trust, and pro–social behavior in a variety of business ventures; e.g. alliances, supply chains, public–private partnerships, work teams, and communities.
April 08, 2016, David Dickinson, Ph.D. - Sleep restriction and time-of-day effects on simple social interaction
Abstract: Simple bargaining games are the foundation of more complex social interactions necessary for healthy relationships and well-functioning societies. Neuroscience research has shown that high-level deliberative thinking processes are necessary for social-decision making—it just seems cognitively less demanding to be greedy or to mistrust. In this paper, our focus is on how commonly-experienced adverse sleep states impact outcomes in the classic simple bargaining games (ultimatum, dictator, and trust games). Specifically, we experimentally manipulate sleep states of 184 young-adult subjects who took part in a 3 week experimental protocol. Subjects were administered each game twice: once after a full week of sleep restriction and once after a full week of well-rested sleep levels. Subjects were also randomly assigned to early morning (7:30 am) or later evening (10:00 pm) sessions to manipulate the optimality of the time-of-day of the decisions. We find a robust result of increased greed, reduced trust, and reduced trustworthiness following sleep restriction, after controlling for demographics and session indicators. We find no significant impact of circadian timing of the decision for these tasks. A manipulation check indicates that the sleep restriction component of the design contributes most significantly to increased self-reported sleepiness and altered mood states like irritability and alertness. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that sleep restriction reduces the relative input of deliberate thinking in social interactions.
Bio: David Dickinson is a Professor of Economics and Senior Research Fellow at CERPA (Center for Economic Research and Policy Analysis) at Appalachian State University. He is also affiliated with the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) and the Economic Science Institute (ESI). His current research includes, among other things, a major program involving “sleep and decision making”. His research has been regularly supported over the years by the National Science Foundation, and his work has appeared in Games and Economic Behavior, Journal of Labor Economics, Experimental Economics, and the Journal of Sleep Research, to name a few.
+ - Past Speakers
Feb. 5, 2016, Juergen Huber, Ph.D. - Do Economics Lab Experiments Replicate Predictably?
Sept. 25, 2015, Adam Sanjurjo, Ph.D. - Surprised by the Gambler´s and Hot Hand Fallacies? A Truth in the Law of Small Numbers - Watch lecture
Mar. 20, 2015, John Horton, Ph.D. - Price Floors and Employer Preferences: Evidence from a Minimum Wage Experiment
May 12, 2014, Don Ross, Ph.D - Psychological versus economic models of bounded rationality - Watch lecture
Dec. 06, 2013, Jack Stecher, Ph.D. -Description and Experience Based Decision Making: An Experimental and Structural Estimation Approach to the Decision-Experience Gap
Feb. 22, 2013 Jordi Brandts Bernad, Ph.D. - Let’s talk: How communication affects contract design.
Nov. 9, 2012 Uri Gneezy, Ph.D. - Incentives and Behavior Change
Sept. 28, 2012 Charles Thomas, Ph.D. - An Alternating-Offers Model of Multilateral Negotiations - Watch lecture
Aug. 31, 2012 Yan Chen, Ph.D. - Crowdsourcing with All-pay Auctions: a Field Experiment on Taskcn - Watch lecture
Apr. 20, 2012 Shawn Kantor, Ph.D. - Do Research Universities Generate Local Economic Growth? - Watch lecture
Feb. 24, 2012 John Tooby, Ph.D. - The Welfare Tradeoff Architecture, Cooperation, and Social Emotions - For further reading please see: Formidability and the logic of human anger and The architecture of human kin detection. - Watch lecture
Nov. 11, 2011 Mark M. Bykowsky, Ph.D. - A Market-based Approach to Establishing Licensing Rules: Licensed Versus Unlicensed Use of Spectrum Federal Communications Commission - please watch this video before lecture - Watch lecture
Oct. 21, 2011 Parker Ballinger, Ph.D. - Individual versus Social Learning: The Importance of Demonstrability - Watch lecture
Apr. 8, 2011 Kevin McCabe, Ph.D. – Experiments on the role of third parties on redistribution decisions. For further reading please see: Shared Experience and Third-Party Decisions: A Laboratory Result, Legitimacy in the lab – The separate and joint effects of earned roles and earned endowments in third-party redistribution, Whose money is it anyway? Ingroups and distributive behavior. - Watch lecture
Apr. 1, 2011 Michael Gurven, Ph.D. - Experimental investigation of fairness and altruism norms in small-scale societies - Further reading: Culture sometimes matters: Intra-cultural variation in pro-social behavior among Tsimane Amerindians and Collective Action in Action: Prosocial Behavior in and out of the Laboratory - Watch lecture
Feb. 18, 2011 Catherine Eckel, Ph.D. - Giving to Government: Voluntary Taxation in the Lab - Watch lecture
Feb. 4, 2011 Peter Boettke, Ph.D. - Polycentrism and Gargantua: Which Model Best Provides Public Education? - Watch lecture
Oct. 5, 2010 Andreas Wilke, Ph.D. - Past and Present Environments: The Evolution of Decision Making
May 7, 2010 Jim Gentle, Ph.D. - The Contribution of Jumps to the Volatility of Asset Prices - Watch lecture
Apr. 9, 2010 Gregory Waymire, Ph.D. - Can Trust Be Sustained in an Uncertain World When Individuals Have Machiavellian Intelligence? - Watch lecture
Feb. 5, 2010 Kevin McCabe, Ph.D. - Watch lecture
Dec. 2, 2009 Jeffrey Tollaksen, Ph.D. - New Ideas About the Nature of Time - Watch lecture
Nov. 13, 2009 Sarah F. Brosnan, Ph.D. - An Evolutionary Perspective on the Perception and Utilization of Property . Watch lecture
Oct. 9, 2009 Monica Smith, Ph.D. - A cognitive History of Material Objects: The Archaeology of Possession, Inheritance, and Value . Watch lecture
May 20, 2009 Gerd Gigerenzer Ph.D. - Homo Heuristicus: Why Biased Minds Make Better Inferences. Watch lecture
Mar. 20, 2009 John Ledyard Ph.D. – Individual Evolutionary Learning, Other-regarding Preferences, and the Voluntary Contributions Mechanism. Watch lecture
Nov. 7, 2008 Larry Iannaccone Ph.D. - Looking Backward: A Cross-National Study of Religious Trends. Watch lecture
Need disability Services?
Disability services will be provided upon request. If you require specific accommodations for attending a lecture, your request must be submitted no later than seven days prior to the lecture date.
Please submit requests or questions to: Cyndi Dumas at (714) 516-4513 or email@example.com.