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Belief formation: an experiment with outside observers

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Author Info

  • Kyle Hyndman

    ()

  • Erkut Özbay

    ()

  • Andrew Schotter

    ()

  • Wolf Ehrblatt

    ()

Abstract

In this paper we investigate the necessary ingredients for an accurate model of belief formation. Using experimental data from a previous experiment, we bring in a new group of subjects whose job it is to predict the action choices of the subjects from the previous experiment. While the rules we consider are all, strictly speaking, adaptive (being based on past observables), some of the variables we uncover represent fairly sophisticated behaviour. Going from less to more sophisticated, we find that the following are important components of the belief formation process: the history of play, payoffs (whether real or ``imagined" in the sense of Camerer and Ho (1999)) of the player whose actions our subjects are predicting and the payoffs of the other player. The paper also documents the presence of subject-specific heterogeneity in both initial beliefs and, to varying degrees, almost all of the variables found to influence beliefs.

(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s10683-011-9296-2
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Experimental Economics.

Volume (Year): 15 (2012)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
Pages: 176-203

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Handle: RePEc:kap:expeco:v:15:y:2012:i:1:p:176-203

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Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=102888

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References

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  1. Miguel Costa-Gomes & Vincent P. Crawford & Bruno Broseta, . "Cognition and Behavior in Normal-Form Games:An Experimental Study," Discussion Papers 00/45, Department of Economics, University of York.
  2. Cheung, Yin-Wong & Friedman, Daniel, 1997. "Individual Learning in Normal Form Games: Some Laboratory Results," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 46-76, April.
  3. Miguel A. Costa-Gomes & Georg Weizs�cker, 2008. "Stated Beliefs and Play in Normal-Form Games," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 75(3), pages 729-762.
  4. Camerer, Colin F. & Ho, Teck-Hua & Chong, Juin-Kuan, 2002. "Sophisticated Experience-Weighted Attraction Learning and Strategic Teaching in Repeated Games," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 104(1), pages 137-188, May.
  5. Stahl Dale O. & Wilson Paul W., 1995. "On Players' Models of Other Players: Theory and Experimental Evidence," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 218-254, July.
  6. Yaw Nyarko & Andrew Schotter, 2002. "An Experimental Study of Belief Learning Using Elicited Beliefs," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(3), pages 971-1005, May.
  7. Wolf Ze'ev Ehrblatt & Kyle Hyndman & Erkut Y. ÄOzbay & Andrew Schotter, 2006. "Convergence: An Experimental Study," Levine's Working Paper Archive 122247000000001148, David K. Levine.
  8. Huck, Steffen & Weizsacker, Georg, 2002. "Do players correctly estimate what others do? : Evidence of conservatism in beliefs," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 71-85, January.
  9. Palfrey, Thomas R. & Wang, Stephanie W., . "On eliciting beliefs in strategic games," Working Papers 1271, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  10. Offerman, Theo & Sonnemans, Joep & Schram, Arthur, 1996. "Value Orientations, Expectations and Voluntary Contributions in Public Goods," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(437), pages 817-45, July.
  11. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
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Cited by:
  1. Ozan Aksoy & Jeroen Weesie, 2013. "Hierarchical Bayesian Analysis of Biased Beliefs and Distributional Other-Regarding Preferences," Games, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 4(1), pages 66-88, February.

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