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Testing Game Theory in the Field: Swedish LUPI Lottery Games

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Author Info

  • Östling, Robert

    ()
    (Institute for International Economic Studies, Stockholm University)

  • Wang, Joseph Tao-yi

    ()
    (Department of Economics, National Taiwan University)

  • Chou, Eileen

    ()
    (Management and Organization, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University)

  • Camerer, Colin F.

    ()
    (Division for the Humanities and Social Sciences, California Institute of Technology)

Abstract

Game theory is usually difficult to test precisely in the field because predictions typically depend sensitively on features that are not controlled or observed. We conduct one such test using field data from the Swedish lowest unique positive integer (LUPI) game. In the LUPI game, players pick positive integers and whoever chose the lowest unique number wins a fixed prize. Theoretical equilibrium predictions are derived assuming Poisson-distributed uncertainty about the number of players, and tested using both field and laboratory data. The field and lab data show similar patterns. Despite various deviations from equilibrium, there is a surprising degree of convergence toward equilibrium. Some of the deviations from equilibrium can be rationalized by a cognitive hierarchy model.

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File URL: http://swopec.hhs.se/hastef/papers/hastef0671.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Stockholm School of Economics in its series Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance with number 671.

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Length: 49 pages
Date of creation: 14 Aug 2007
Date of revision: 30 Oct 2007
Publication status: Published as Östling, Robert, Joseph Tao-yi Wang, Eileen Chou and Colin F. Camerer, 'Testing Game Theory in the Field: Swedish LUPI Lottery Games' in American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, 2011, pages 1-33.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:hastef:0671

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Postal: The Economic Research Institute, Stockholm School of Economics, P.O. Box 6501, 113 83 Stockholm, Sweden
Phone: +46-(0)8-736 90 00
Fax: +46-(0)8-31 01 57
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Web page: http://www.hhs.se/
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Related research

Keywords: Population uncertainty; Poisson game; guessing game; experimental methods; behavioral game theory; level-k; cognitive hierarchy;

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References

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  1. Miguel Costa-Gomes & Vincent P. Crawford, 2004. "Cognition And Behavior In Two-Person Guessing Games: An Experimental Study," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000000143, UCLA Department of Economics.
  2. Andrea Gallice, 2009. "Lowest Unique Bid Auctions with Signals," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 112, Collegio Carlo Alberto, revised Sep 2009.
  3. Vincent P. Crawford & Nagore Iriberri, 2007. "Fatal Attraction: Salience, Naïveté, and Sophistication in Experimental "Hide-and-Seek" Games," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(5), pages 1731-1750, December.
  4. Vincent P. Crawford & Nagore Iriberri, 2005. "Level-k Auctions: Can a Non-Equilibrium Model of Strategic Thinking Explain the Winner's Curse and Overbidding in Private-Value Auctions?," Levine's Bibliography 784828000000000604, UCLA Department of Economics.
  5. Camerer, Colin F. & Palfrey, Thomas R. & Rogers, Brian W., 2006. "Heterogeneous quantal response equilibrium and cognitive hierarchies," Working Papers 1260, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  6. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
  7. 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.
  8. 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.
  9. Ido Erev & Alvin Roth & Robert Slonim & Greg Barron, 2007. "Learning and equilibrium as useful approximations: Accuracy of prediction on randomly selected constant sum games," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 33(1), pages 29-51, October.
  10. Jürgen Eichberger & Dmitri Vinogradov, 2008. "Least Unmatched Price Auctions: A First Approach," Working Papers 0471, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics, revised Jul 2008.
  11. Raviv, Yaron & Virag, Gabor, 2009. "Gambling by auctions," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 369-378, May.
  12. Steven D. Levitt & John A. List, 2007. "What Do Laboratory Experiments Measuring Social Preferences Reveal About the Real World?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(2), pages 153-174, Spring.
  13. Harold Houba & Dinard Laan & Dirk Veldhuizen, 2011. "Endogenous entry in lowest-unique sealed-bid auctions," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 71(2), pages 269-295, August.
  14. Colin F. Camerer & Teck-Hua Ho & Juin-Kuan Chong, 2004. "A Cognitive Hierarchy Model of Games," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(3), pages 861-898, August.
  15. Nagel, Rosemarie, 1995. "Unraveling in Guessing Games: An Experimental Study," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(5), pages 1313-26, December.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Lawrence C.Y Choo & Todd R. Kaplan, 2014. "Explaining Behavior in the "11-20” Game," Discussion Papers 1401, Exeter University, Department of Economics.
  2. Wang, Zhongmin & Xu, Minbo, 2013. "Selling a Dollar for More Than a Dollar? Evidence from Online Penny Auctions," Discussion Papers dp-13-15, Resources For the Future.
  3. Alexander L. Brown & Colin F. Camerer & Dan Lovallo, 2012. "To Review or Not to Review? Limited Strategic Thinking at the Movie Box Office," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(2), pages 1-26, May.
  4. Sotiris Georganas & Paul J. Healy & Roberto A. Weber, 2014. "On the Persistence of Strategic Sophistication," CESifo Working Paper Series 4653, CESifo Group Munich.
  5. Toomas Hinnosaar, 2013. "Penny Auctions are Unpredictable," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 305, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
  6. Andrea Gallice, 2010. "Price Reveal Auctions on the Internet," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 147, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
  7. Vincent P. Crawford & Miguel A. Costa-Gomes & Nagore Iriberri, 2013. "Structural Models of Nonequilibrium Strategic Thinking: Theory, Evidence, and Applications," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 51(1), pages 5-62, March.
  8. Gill, David & Prowse, Victoria, 2012. "Cognitive ability and learning to play equilibrium: A level-k analysis," MPRA Paper 38317, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 23 Apr 2012.
  9. Yann Girard & Florian Hett, 2013. "Competitiveness in dynamic group contests: Evidence from combined field and lab data," Working Papers 1303, Gutenberg School of Management and Economics, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz, revised 01 Apr 2013.

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