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Full-Text Articles in Behavioral Economics

Law And Behavioral Biology, Owen D. Jones, Timothy H. Goldsmith Apr 2019

Law And Behavioral Biology, Owen D. Jones, Timothy H. Goldsmith

Owen Jones

Society uses law to encourage people to behave differently than they would behave in the absence of law. This fundamental purpose makes law highly dependent on sound understandings of the multiple causes of human behavior. The better those understandings, the better law can achieve social goals with legal tools. In this Article, Professors Jones and Goldsmith argue that many long held understandings about where behavior comes from are rapidly obsolescing as a consequence of developments in the various fields constituting behavioral biology. By helping to refine law's understandings of behavior's causes, they argue, behavioral biology can help to ...


Socioeconomic Influences On Property Crime Rates: A Study In Virginia's Counties, Mary Passley Apr 2019

Socioeconomic Influences On Property Crime Rates: A Study In Virginia's Counties, Mary Passley

Student Scholar Showcase

Most research on factors and causes of crime, whether property or violent crime, focuses on individuals’ behavior or their surrounding environment. In this research, I explore the idea of socioeconomic factors correlated to property crime. I conducted a retrospective design to fully explore United States Census data and crime data gathered by the Bureau of Justice Statistics to discover statistically significant variables connected to property crime. Significant findings were shown by average people per house and retail sales per capita in all counties. Additional significant findings were percent employment change and percent with high school degree or higher in low ...


Pareto-Improving Transition To Fully Funded Pensions Under Myopia, Torben M. Andersen, Joydeep Bhattacharya, Marias H. Gestsson Mar 2019

Pareto-Improving Transition To Fully Funded Pensions Under Myopia, Torben M. Andersen, Joydeep Bhattacharya, Marias H. Gestsson

Joydeep Bhattacharya

Under dynamic efficiency, a pay-as-you-go (PAYG) pension scheme is often described as an “original sin”: It helps the current generation of retirees but hurts future generations because they are forced to save via a return-dominated scheme. Abandoning it is deemed welfare-improving but typically not for all generations. But what if agents are present-biased (hence, undersave for retirement) and the “paternalistically motivated forced savings” component of a PAYG scheme motivated its existence in the first place? This paper shows it is possible to transition from such a PAYG scheme on to a higher return, mandated fully-funded scheme; yet, no generation is ...


Behavioral Impediments To Valuing Annuities: Complexity And Choice Bracketing, Jeffrey R. Brown, Arie Kapteyn, Erzo Luttmer, Olivia S. Mitchell, Anya Samek Mar 2019

Behavioral Impediments To Valuing Annuities: Complexity And Choice Bracketing, Jeffrey R. Brown, Arie Kapteyn, Erzo Luttmer, Olivia S. Mitchell, Anya Samek

Wharton Pension Research Council Working Papers

This paper examines two behavioral factors that diminish people’s ability to value a lifetime income stream or annuity, drawing on a survey of about 4,000 adults in a U.S. nationally representative sample. By experimentally varying the degree of complexity, we provide the first causal evidence that increasing the complexity of the annuity choice reduces respondents’ ability to value the annuity, measured by the difference between the sell and buy values people assign to the annuity. We also find that people’s ability to value an annuity increases when we experimentally induce them to think jointly about the ...


Fossil-Fueled Discourse, Henry Walter Mar 2019

Fossil-Fueled Discourse, Henry Walter

Crossing Borders: A Multidisciplinary Journal of Undergraduate Scholarship

As industrial civilization confronts the realities of devastating global climate change and the local environmental catastrophes precipitated by coal, oil, and natural gas extraction, this paper moves away from mainstream analyses of demand-side choices and instead considers how miners and rig workers make decisions surrounding the ethicality of their work. This article considers corporate publications including investor and sustainability reports and company-sponsored employee magazines, industry magazines, and news sources in top-producing fossil fuel producing localities in the United States. A discursive analysis of this set of publications uncovers a dense rhetorical lattice of misinformation and disinformation surrounding fossil fuel workers ...


"Baby Factories": Exploitation Of Women In Southern Nigeria, Jacinta Chiamaka Nwaka, Akachi Odoemene Mar 2019

"Baby Factories": Exploitation Of Women In Southern Nigeria, Jacinta Chiamaka Nwaka, Akachi Odoemene

Dignity: A Journal on Sexual Exploitation and Violence

Despite the writings of feminist thinkers and efforts of other advocates of feminism to change the dominant narratives on women, exploitation of women is a fact that has remained endemic in various parts of the world, and particularly in Africa. Nigeria is one of those countries in Africa where women are largely exposed to varying degrees of exploitation. This paper examines the development and proliferation of baby-selling centers in southern Nigeria and its impacts on and implication for women in Nigeria. It demonstrates how an attempt to give protection to unwed pregnant girls has metamorphosed into “baby harvesting” and selling ...


Identification Of Resource Extraction Technologies When The Resource Stock Is Unobservable, Quinn Weninger, Larry Perruso, Helle Bunzel Feb 2019

Identification Of Resource Extraction Technologies When The Resource Stock Is Unobservable, Quinn Weninger, Larry Perruso, Helle Bunzel

Economics Working Papers

This paper consistently estimates the structural properties of a fishery resource extraction technology. We overcome two ubiquitous features of fisheries data generating processes that invalidate classical estimators: unobservability by the researcher (but partial observability by fishermen) of the fish stock, and endogenous production decisions that vary with private information about stock abundance and economic variables. We adopt methods used in fisheries stock assessment to control for unobserved stock effects on productivity. A nonlinear instrumental variables estimator controls for endogenous choices of the output mix. The approach is applied to the US Gulf of Mexico commercial reef fish fishery. Comparison with ...


Motherhood, Migration, And Self-Employment Of College Graduates, Zhengyu Cai, Heather M. Stephens, John V. Winters Feb 2019

Motherhood, Migration, And Self-Employment Of College Graduates, Zhengyu Cai, Heather M. Stephens, John V. Winters

Economics Working Papers

Women face unique challenges in starting and running their own businesses and may have differing motives to men for pursuing self-employment. Previous research suggests that married women with families value the flexibility that self-employment can offer, allowing them to balance their family responsibilities with their career aspirations. This may be especially true for college graduates, who tend to have more successful businesses. Access to childcare may also affect their labor force decisions. Using American Community Survey microdata, we examine how birth-place residence, a proxy for access to extended family and child care, relates to self-employment and hours worked for college-graduate ...


The Impact Of The Durbin Amendment On Banks, Merchants, And Consumers, Vladimir Mukharlyamov, Natasha Sarin Jan 2019

The Impact Of The Durbin Amendment On Banks, Merchants, And Consumers, Vladimir Mukharlyamov, Natasha Sarin

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

After the Great Recession, new regulatory interventions were introduced to protect consumers and reduce the costs of financial products. Some voiced concern that direct price regulation was unlikely to help consumers, because banks offset losses in one domain by increasing the prices that they charge consumers for other products. This paper studies this issue using the Durbin Amendment, which decreased the interchange fees that banks are allowed to charge merchants for processing debit transactions. Merchant interchange fees, previously averaging 2 percent of transaction value, were capped at $0.22, decreasing bank revenue by $6.5 billion annually. The objective of ...


Actual And Self-Assessed Financial Literacy Among Employees Of A South African University, Gizelle D. Willows Jan 2019

Actual And Self-Assessed Financial Literacy Among Employees Of A South African University, Gizelle D. Willows

Numeracy

This study examines the level of financial literacy and self-assessed financial literacy amongst members of a South African tertiary institution’s retirement fund. Based on surveys of the fund’s members, I employ descriptive statistics and multivariate regression analyses to examine differences in financial literacy within and across groups. The results show that, despite working for an employer implementing many best practices identified by financial literacy advocates, respondents from all demographic subgroups possess relatively low levels of financial knowledge. Men, White respondents, and those with a higher cost of employment or higher educational attainment were more likely to have a ...


One Step At A Time: Does Gradualism Build Coordination?, Maoliang Ye, Jie Zheng, Plamen Nikolov, Sam Asher Jan 2019

One Step At A Time: Does Gradualism Build Coordination?, Maoliang Ye, Jie Zheng, Plamen Nikolov, Sam Asher

Economics Faculty Scholarship

This study investigates a potential mechanism to promote coordination. With theoretical guidance using a belief-based learning model, we conduct a multi-period, binary-choice, and weakest-link laboratory coordination experiment to study the effect of gradualism – increasing the required levels (stakes) of contributions slowly over time rather than requiring a high level of contribution immediately – on group coordination performance. We randomly assign subjects to three treatments: starting and continuing at a high stake, starting at a low stake but jumping to a high stake after a few periods, and starting at a low stake while gradually increasing the stakes over time (the Gradualism ...


The Effects Of Environmental Factors On Maternal Health, Infant Health And Mental Health, Li Zeng Jan 2019

The Effects Of Environmental Factors On Maternal Health, Infant Health And Mental Health, Li Zeng

Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation explores the effects of environmental factors on adult’s health and infant’s health at birth. The first chapter of this dissertation studies the impact of maternal stress triggered by wildfire on infant birth outcomes. As a common natural event, one of the most noticeable effects of wildfires is the stress caused by their threat to people’s life and property. This study estimates the impact of exposure to wildfire events during pregnancy, especially the effects of maternal stress triggered by wildfire outbreaks, on infant birth outcomes. By linking three data sources – birth records from the New Jersey ...


Product Concentration And Usage: Behavioral Effects In The Glyphosate Market, Edward D. Perry, David A. Hennessy, Giancarlo Moschini Jan 2019

Product Concentration And Usage: Behavioral Effects In The Glyphosate Market, Edward D. Perry, David A. Hennessy, Giancarlo Moschini

CARD Working Papers

People often ignore or misunderstand information that would help them make better decisions. For products that differ by concentration level, a critical choice concerns the correct dosage rate. We study the effects of changing glyphosate product concentration levels on farmers’ glyphosate usage behavior. Glyphosate is the world’s most widely used herbicide. After glyphosate went off patent in 2000, product variants with higher concentration levels entered the market. Using detailed farmlevel glyphosate use data in U.S. corn and soybeans over the period 1998-2011, we estimate the impact of product concentration levels on glyphosate application rates. We control for prices ...


The Changing Nature Of Work, Leadership, And Organizational Culture In Future Ready Organizations, Saloni Dhir Jan 2019

The Changing Nature Of Work, Leadership, And Organizational Culture In Future Ready Organizations, Saloni Dhir

CMC Senior Theses

Abstract

The relationship between individual and organizational performance is a key challenge for leaders in modern organizations, especially with the current disruption in technology and innovation. This thesis is a literature review and compilation of the relevant empirical evidence on various processes of industrial groups and organizational characteristics such as the changing nature of work, leadership, and company culture in detail. I investigate the complex challenges that millennials and organizations are facing in the current VUCA work environment as well as their potential responses to these changes. I map out the evolution of the concept of work and compare changes ...


Stock Recommendations In China: Buyer Beware, Singapore Management University Jan 2019

Stock Recommendations In China: Buyer Beware, Singapore Management University

Perspectives@SMU

Research analysts have incentives to issue positive recommendations; social ties with fund managers exert considerable influence


Accounting For Agent Heterogeneity In Market And Policy Analysis, Konstantinos Giannakas Jan 2019

Accounting For Agent Heterogeneity In Market And Policy Analysis, Konstantinos Giannakas

Zea E-Books

doi:10.13014/K2416V8V

This book presents a multi-market framework of market and policy analysis that explicitly accounts for the empirically relevant heterogeneity in consumer preferences and producer characteristics. The explicit consideration of consumer and producer heterogeneity represents a significant departure from the representative consumer and producer that have been at the center of most of the literature on market and policy analysis, and enables the distributional impacts of changes in market conditions and policies to be fully identified. The framework is used to analyze the system-wide market and welfare impacts of a number of changes in market conditions (like ...


Domestic Violence: The Financial Implications Of Abuse, Yenny Masmela Jan 2019

Domestic Violence: The Financial Implications Of Abuse, Yenny Masmela

Petersheim Academic Exposition

No abstract provided.


Elaborations On Multiattribute Utility Theory Dominance, David L. Vairo Jan 2019

Elaborations On Multiattribute Utility Theory Dominance, David L. Vairo

Theses and Dissertations

ELABORATIONS ON MULTIATTRIBUTE UTILITY THEORY DOMINANCE

By David L. Vairo

A dissertation submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Virginia Commonwealth University, 2019.

Major Director: Dissertation director’s name, Dr. Jason Merrick, Supply Chain Management and Analytics

Multiattribute Utility Theory (MAUT) is used to structure decisions with more than one factor (attribute) in play. These decisions become complex when the attributes are dependent on one another. Where linear modeling is concerned with how factors are directly related or correlated with each other, MAUT is concerned with how a decision ...


Examining The Utility Of Behavioral Economic Demand In Addiction Science, Justin Charles Strickland Jan 2019

Examining The Utility Of Behavioral Economic Demand In Addiction Science, Justin Charles Strickland

Theses and Dissertations--Psychology

The marriage of perspectives from behavioral economic theory and learning theory has the potential to advance an understanding of substance use and substance use disorder. Behavioral economic demand is a central concept to this interdisciplinary approach. Evaluating demand in the laboratory and clinic can improve previous research on the relative reinforcing effects of drugs by accounting for the multi-dimensional nature of reinforcement rather than viewing reinforcement as a unitary construct. Recent advances in the commodity purchase task methodology have further simplified the measurement of demand values in human participants. This dissertation project presents a programmatic series of studies designed to ...


Monthly Spending Dynamics Of The Elderly Following A Health Shock: Evidence From Singapore, Terence Cheng, Li Jing, Rhema Vaithianathan Jan 2019

Monthly Spending Dynamics Of The Elderly Following A Health Shock: Evidence From Singapore, Terence Cheng, Li Jing, Rhema Vaithianathan

Research Collection School Of Economics

We use novel longitudinal datafrom 19 monthly waves of the Singapore Life Panel to examine the short-termdynamics of the effects health shocks have on household health and non-healthspending and income by the elderly. The health shocks we study are theoccurrence of new major conditions such as cancer, heart problems, and minorconditions (e.g. diabetes, and hypertension). Our empirical strategy exploits unanticipated changesin health status through the diagnosis of new health conditions, combined withan individual fixed effect framework. We find that major shocks have large and persistent effects while minorshocks have small and mainly contemporaneous effects. We find that householdincome reduces ...


Climate Underground: The Effects Of Climate Variability On Groundwater Irrigation, Monica Gronseth Jan 2019

Climate Underground: The Effects Of Climate Variability On Groundwater Irrigation, Monica Gronseth

Undergraduate Honors Theses

This study addresses the question of groundwater use sensitivity to changes in climate. We use county fixed effects models to empirically estimate the effect of climatic changes during the growing season on groundwater use for irrigation. This study uses data from USGS reports on industry water use and weather data from NOAA. We find both precipitation and temperature have a significant effect on groundwater irrigation, with particular prominence in areas with lower annual precipitation on average. These effect estimates are then used to model the effects of climate change on groundwater irrigation by the end of the century. We conclude ...


Trauma And Religiosity, Abdullah Helal Jan 2019

Trauma And Religiosity, Abdullah Helal

Undergraduate Honors Theses

This research explores the impact of six different adverse life events on religiosity by utilizing a nationally representative dataset of the entire Australian population, combining information on religious importance, religious attendance, and a variety of adverse life events. We exploit the longitudinal dimension of the dataset by using fixed-effects estimations to account for time and individual variations. We found that the importance of religious beliefs increases in response to within the past year occurrence of the death of a friend, death of a relative, and personal injury. Being a victim of physical violence cause a higher increase in the importance ...


Do Humans Prioritize Time, Energy, Intensity… Or Something Else Altogether When Making Decisions About Walking On Level Vs. Uphill Surfaces?, Helena Gabrielle Meyer Jan 2019

Do Humans Prioritize Time, Energy, Intensity… Or Something Else Altogether When Making Decisions About Walking On Level Vs. Uphill Surfaces?, Helena Gabrielle Meyer

Undergraduate Honors Theses

During daily life, people walk from one point to another. Sometimes they choose to walk along designated paths; other times they take shortcuts. To determine how humans weigh costs like time, metabolic energy expenditure, and metabolic intensity, I studied subjects making walking decisions about walking up a hill vs. along a level surface for various distances. I hypothesized that subjects would be indifferent to walking uphill at an 8.5% grade vs. on the level when the two options required the same time or the same amount of metabolic energy.

Further, I hypothesized that subjects would walk at speeds such ...


A Hedonic Analysis Of The Impact Of The 2017 Firestone Explosion On The Effect Of Wells On Home Values In Boulder County, Jason Habib Jan 2019

A Hedonic Analysis Of The Impact Of The 2017 Firestone Explosion On The Effect Of Wells On Home Values In Boulder County, Jason Habib

Undergraduate Honors Theses

The use of hydraulic fracturing technology for oil and gas production has rapidly spread across the United States. As fracking production has moved closer to populated regions, concerns have been raised by homeowners and politicians about water contamination, air and noise pollution, and the potential impact of fracking on property values. In this paper, I examine how a deadly 2017 fracking explosion in Firestone, Colorado, impacted the effect of fracking wells on housing values in Boulder County. Using a hedonic pricing model, I control for other factors that influence a home’s price to isolate the effect of fracking wells ...


What Drives Merger Waves? A Study Of The Seven Historical Merger Waves In The U.S., Katherine Ching Jan 2019

What Drives Merger Waves? A Study Of The Seven Historical Merger Waves In The U.S., Katherine Ching

Scripps Senior Theses

Historically, merger and acquisition (or M&A) activity has occurred in cyclical patterns, forming what are known as “merger waves.” To date, there have been a total of seven waves. Though it is widely acknowledged that merger waves exist, there is no consensus on what drives these waves. Through both qualitative and quantitative analysis, this paper aims to determine the causes of merger waves and looks at those causes through two different lenses: the neoclassical view, which states that economic shocks cause merger waves, and the behavioral view, which states that increases in merger activity are due to managerial behavior ...


Circadian Variations And Risky Decision Making, Sana Sra Jan 2019

Circadian Variations And Risky Decision Making, Sana Sra

Scripps Senior Theses

Over the past decades, decision making under risk has garnered a great amount of attention both in the field of economics and psychology. Although state-dependent variabilities of risk taking are well-documented, little is known about the effects of a person’s preferred time of day, or chronotype, in risky decision making. Under circumstances of circadian mismatch (e.g., when an “early bird” makes decisions in the evening), research suggests that decision making may reflect a greater reliance on heuristics, such as using stereotypes in social judgments. However, the effects of circadian mismatch on heuristics in risky decision making are relatively ...


The Fight-Or-Flight Response To The Joneses And Income Inequality, Richard C. Barnett, Joydeep Bhattacharya, Helle Bunzel Dec 2018

The Fight-Or-Flight Response To The Joneses And Income Inequality, Richard C. Barnett, Joydeep Bhattacharya, Helle Bunzel

Economics Working Papers

This paper studies the fight-or-flight ambivalence people show
towards the success of the proverbial Joneses. If an agent cares about
leisure and his consumption relative to a benchmark set by the Joneses, his
preferences display the keeping-up-with-the-Joneses (KUJ) property if an
increase in the benchmark urges him to substitute away from leisure into
work, allowing him to finance more consumption; the opposite is labeled
running-away-from-the-Joneses (RAJ). The long literature, thus far, finds a)
if any agent's behavior displays KUJ (or RAJ), everyone's will, or b) if an
agent displays KUJ (or RAJ) in one portion of the consumption ...


Why Trust Out-Groups? The Role Of Punishment Under Uncertainty, Xiaofei Pan, Daniel Houser Dec 2018

Why Trust Out-Groups? The Role Of Punishment Under Uncertainty, Xiaofei Pan, Daniel Houser

Economics Faculty Journal Articles

We conducted a hidden-effort trust game, in which we assigned subjects to one of two groups. The groups, which were formed through two different group formation processes, included a “social” group that required sharing and exchange among its members, and a “non-social” group that did not. Once assigned, subjects participated in the game with members from both groups, either with or without the opportunity to punish a trustee who may have defected on them. We found that for investors in the non-social group, the opportunity to punish a trustee worked to promote trust, but only when the trustee was a ...


Intergenerational Debt Dynamics Without Tears, Torben M. Andersen, Joydeep Bhattacharya Dec 2018

Intergenerational Debt Dynamics Without Tears, Torben M. Andersen, Joydeep Bhattacharya

Economics Working Papers

Governments, motivated by a desire to improve upon long-run laissez faire, routinely undertake enduring, productive expenditures, say, in public education, that generate positive externalities across cohorts but require investments be made up front. If everyone after the policy is initiated is at least as happy as before and there are some outstanding resources, the Hicks-Kaldor efficiency rule suggests that the present value of these resources could, hypothetically, be distributed to future generations creating the potential for generational Pareto improvement. The literature recognizes the challenge in constructing a policy that is actually Pareto-improving since the policy itself may generate general-equilibrium gains ...


The Big Spenddown: Digital Investment Advice And Decumulation, Steven Polansky, Peter Chandler, Gary R. Mottola Dec 2018

The Big Spenddown: Digital Investment Advice And Decumulation, Steven Polansky, Peter Chandler, Gary R. Mottola

Wharton Pension Research Council Working Papers

Digital investment advice providers have traditionally focused on the process of assets accumulation. But as Baby Boomers and Gen Xers age, they will need to shift from accumulation to decumulation, and there is less agreement about how to manage payouts during retirement. This chapter provides on overview of digital investment advice in the U.S., explores how digital advice providers are thinking about and executing decumulation strategies, identifies challenges they face, and discusses how these decumulation strategies could affect investors.