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Risk-taking tournaments - Theory and experimental evidence

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  • Nieken, Petra
  • Sliwka, Dirk

Abstract

We study risk-taking behavior in a simple two person tournament in a theoretical model as well as a laboratory experiment. First, a model is analyzed in which two agents simultaneously decide between a risky and a safe strategy and we allow for all possible degrees of correlation between the outcomes of the risky strategies. We show that risk-taking behavior crucially depends on this correlation as well as on the size of a potential lead of one of the contestants. We find that the experimental subjects acted mostly quite well in line with the derived theoretical predictions.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Psychology.

Volume (Year): 31 (2010)
Issue (Month): 3 (June)
Pages: 254-268

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Handle: RePEc:eee:joepsy:v:31:y:2010:i:3:p:254-268

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/joep

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Keywords: Tournaments Competition Risk-taking Experiment;

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References

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  1. Hvide, Hans K. & Kristiansen, Eirik G., 2003. "Risk taking in selection contests," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 172-179, January.
  2. Hans K. Hvide, 2000. "Tournament Rewards and Risk Taking," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 0163, Econometric Society.
  3. Alannah Orrison & Andrew Schotter & Keith Weigelt, 2004. "Multiperson Tournaments: An Experimental Examination," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 50(2), pages 268-279, February.
  4. Matthias Sutter & Christina Strassmair, 2007. "Communication, cooperation and collusion in team tournaments ? An experimental study," Working Papers 2007-19, Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck.
  5. Taylor, Jonathan, 2003. "Risk-taking behavior in mutual fund tournaments," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 373-383, March.
  6. Greiner, Ben, 2004. "An Online Recruitment System for Economic Experiments," MPRA Paper 13513, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  7. Matthias Kräkel & Dirk Sliwka, 2001. "Risk Taking in Asymmetric Tournaments," Bonn Econ Discussion Papers bgse33_2001, University of Bonn, Germany.
  8. Judith A. Chevalier & Glenn D. Ellison, 1995. "Risk Taking by Mutual Funds as a Response to Incentives," NBER Working Papers 5234, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Green, Jerry & Stokey, Nancy, 1983. "A Comparison of Tournaments and Contracts," Scholarly Articles 3203644, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  10. Jeffrey Carpenter & Peter Hans Matthews & John Schirm, 2007. "TOURNAMENTS AND OFFICE POLITICS: Evidence from a real effort experiment," Middlebury College Working Paper Series 0709, Middlebury College, Department of Economics.
  11. Brown, Keith C & Harlow, W V & Starks, Laura T, 1996. " Of Tournaments and Temptations: An Analysis of Managerial Incentives in the Mutual Fund Industry," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 51(1), pages 85-110, March.
  12. Anil Gaba & Ajay Kalra, 1999. "Risk Behavior in Response to Quotas and Contests," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 18(3), pages 417-434.
  13. Edward P. Lazear & Sherwin Rosen, 1979. "Rank-Order Tournaments as Optimum Labor Contracts," NBER Working Papers 0401, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
  15. Bull, Clive & Schotter, Andrew & Weigelt, Keith, 1987. "Tournaments and Piece Rates: An Experimental Study," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(1), pages 1-33, February.
  16. Harbring, Christine & Irlenbusch, Bernd, 2003. "An experimental study on tournament design," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(4), pages 443-464, August.
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Cited by:
  1. David Schmidt & Robert Shupp & James M. Walker, 2005. "Resource Allocation Contests: Experimental Evidence," Caepr Working Papers 2006-004, Center for Applied Economics and Policy Research, Economics Department, Indiana University Bloomington, revised Aug 2006.
  2. Eriksen, Kristoffer & Kvaløy, Ola, 2012. "Myopic Risk Taking in Tournaments," UiS Working Papers in Economics and Finance 2012/13, University of Stavanger.
  3. Christos Genakos & Mario Pagliero, 2009. "Risk taking and performance in multistage tournaments: evidence from weightlifting competitions," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 28599, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  4. Stéphane Robin & Katerina Straznicka & Marie Claire Villeval, 2012. "Bubbles and Incentives : An Experiment on Asset Markets," Working Papers 1235, Groupe d'Analyse et de Théorie Economique (GATE), Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), Université Lyon 2, Ecole Normale Supérieure.
  5. Mueller-Langer, Frank & Andreoli-Versbach, Patrick, 2013. "Leading-effect vs. Risk-taking in Dynamic Tournaments: Evidence from a Real-life Randomized Experiment," Discussion Papers in Economics 15452, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  6. Dijk, Oege & Holmen, Martin & Kirchler, Michael, 2014. "Rank matters–The impact of social competition on portfolio choice," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 97-110.

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