Market Power and the Lerner Index: A Classroom Experiment
AbstractWe describe a classroom experiment that illustrates the concepts of market power and the Lerner Index. Students are organized in groups, each making a decision for a monopolist. Monopolists face different (unknown) demand curves, each with a different (constant) elasticity. Through repetition, students discover the profit maximizing solution and find that different monopolies have different mark-ups. The experimenter then reveals the unknown demand curves and illustrates how different elasticities are graphically and numerically connected to mark-ups and the Lerner index. The experiment can be used in a wide variety of courses including principles of economics, intermediate microeconomics, industrial organization, international trade, managerial economics and MBA classes. The experimental design is flexible: it can accommodate different class sizes (ranging from 10 to 100+ students) as well as different demand parameterizations. Finally, to reinforce the economic concept of profit maximization (MR=MC) in this setting, we also suggest and describe the implementation of an exercise based on the experimental design.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by De Gruyter in its journal Journal of Industrial Organization Education.
Volume (Year): 5 (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
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Web page: http://www.degruyter.com
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- Gerald Eisenkopf & Pascal Sulser, 2013.
"How to Improve Economic Understanding? Testing Classroom Experiments in High Schools,"
Working Paper Series of the Department of Economics, University of Konstanz
2013-04, Department of Economics, University of Konstanz.
- Gerald Eisenkopf & Pascal Sulser, 2013. "A Randomized Controlled Trial of Teaching Methods: Do Classroom Experiments Improve Economic Education in High Schools?," Working Paper Series of the Department of Economics, University of Konstanz 2013-17, Department of Economics, University of Konstanz.
- Gerald Eisenkopf & Pascal Sulser, 2013. "A Randomized Controlled Trial of Teaching Methods: Do Classroom Experiments improve Economic Education in High Schools?," TWI Research Paper Series 80, Thurgauer Wirtschaftsinstitut, Universität Konstanz.
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