Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Informational Asymmetries and Observational Learning in Search

Contents:

Author Info

  • Liran Einav

    ()

Registered author(s):

    Abstract

    As economics modeling moves from super rational decision makers to considering boundedly rational agents, some economic problems deserve a second look. This paper studies the effects of learning on the efficiency of search. Once learning is taken into account, the structure of information flow becomes important. In particular, I highlight the truncated information structure in the search problem. Agents stop searching once a sufficiently attractive price is found. Therefore, they observe the performance of shorter searches, but do not directly observe the performance of longer searches. I design and conduct an experiment to test the hypothesis that this asymmetric flow of information leads agents to search too little. I find strong evidence in its favor. This suggests that in the presence of learning, the provision of a more symmetric information structure will make search more efficient. Copyright Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005

    Download Info

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11166-005-6563-7
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Risk and Uncertainty.

    Volume (Year): 30 (2005)
    Issue (Month): 3 (May)
    Pages: 241-259

    as in new window
    Handle: RePEc:kap:jrisku:v:30:y:2005:i:3:p:241-259

    Contact details of provider:
    Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=100299

    Related research

    Keywords: search; learning; experiment; regret;

    References

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
    as in new window
    1. Sergiu Hart & Andreu Mas-Colell, 1997. "A Simple Adaptive Procedure Leading to Correlated Equilibrium," Game Theory and Information 9703006, EconWPA, revised 24 Mar 1997.
    2. Hey, John D., 1982. "Search for rules for search," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(1), pages 65-81, March.
    3. Schotter, Andrew & Braunstein, Yale M, 1981. "Economic Search: An Experimental Study," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 19(1), pages 1-25, January.
    4. Matthew Rabin, 2000. "Risk Aversion and Expected-Utility Theory: A Calibration Theorem," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1281-1292, September.
    5. Sonnemans, Joep, 1998. "Strategies of search," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 309-332, April.
    6. Kohn, Meir G. & Shavell, Steven, 1974. "The theory of search," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 93-123, October.
    7. Roth, Alvin E. & Erev, Ido, 1995. "Learning in extensive-form games: Experimental data and simple dynamic models in the intermediate term," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 164-212.
    8. Erev, Ido & Roth, Alvin E, 1998. "Predicting How People Play Games: Reinforcement Learning in Experimental Games with Unique, Mixed Strategy Equilibria," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(4), pages 848-81, September.
    9. Moon, Philip & Martin, Andrew, 1996. "The search for consistency in economic search," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 311-321, March.
    10. A. Roth & I. Er’ev, 2010. "Learning in Extensive Form Games: Experimental Data and Simple Dynamic Models in the Intermediate Run," Levine's Working Paper Archive 387, David K. Levine.
    11. Goeree, Jacob K. & Holt, Charles A. & Palfrey, Thomas R., 2002. "Quantal Response Equilibrium and Overbidding in Private-Value Auctions," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 104(1), pages 247-272, May.
    12. Hey, John D., 1987. "Still searching," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 137-144, March.
    13. Thomas Palfrey, 2002. "Quantal Response Equilibrium and Overbidding in Private Value Auctions," Theory workshop papers 357966000000000089, UCLA Department of Economics.
    14. Selten, Reinhard & Joachim Buchta, 1994. "Experimental Sealed Bid First Price Auctions with Directly Observed Bid Functions," Discussion Paper Serie B 270, University of Bonn, Germany.
    15. Berg, Joyce E, et al, 1986. "Controlling Preferences for Lotteries on Units of Experimental Exchange," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 101(2), pages 281-306, May.
    16. Butler, David & Loomes, Graham, 1997. "Quasi-rational Search under Incomplete Information: Some Evidence from Experiments," The Manchester School of Economic & Social Studies, University of Manchester, vol. 65(2), pages 127-44, March.
    17. Kogut, Carl A., 1990. "Consumer search behavior and sunk costs," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 381-392, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as in new window

    Cited by:
    1. Gijs Kuilen & Peter Wakker, 2006. "Learning in the Allais paradox," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 33(3), pages 155-164, December.
    2. Marcela Ibanez & Simon Czermak & Matthias Sutter, . "Searching for a better deal ? On the influence of group decision making, time pressure and gender in a search experiment," Working Papers 2008-05, Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck.

    Lists

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:jrisku:v:30:y:2005:i:3:p:241-259. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Guenther Eichhorn) or (Christopher F. Baum).

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.