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Does Information Change Behavior?

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  • Huffman, Wallace

Abstract

This paper reviews and synthesizes the theory of information economics and empirical evidence on how information changes the behavior of consumers, households and firms. I show that consumers respond to new information in food experiments but perhaps not in retirement account management. Some seeming perverse consumer/investor decision making may be a result of a complex decision with a low expected payoff.

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File URL: http://www.econ.iastate.edu/sites/default/files/publications/papers/p3900-2009-11-02.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Iowa State University, Department of Economics in its series Staff General Research Papers with number 13128.

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Date of creation: 02 Nov 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:isu:genres:13128

Contact details of provider:
Postal: Iowa State University, Dept. of Economics, 260 Heady Hall, Ames, IA 50011-1070
Phone: +1 515.294.6741
Fax: +1 515.294.0221
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Web page: http://www.econ.iastate.edu
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Keywords: moral hazard; information economics; consumer behavior; behavioral economics; adverse selection;

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References

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  1. Paul Milgrom & John Roberts, 1986. "Relying on the Information of Interested Parties," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 17(1), pages 18-32, Spring.
  2. Huffman, Wallace E. & Tegene, Abebayehu, 2002. "Public Acceptance of and Benefits from Agricultural Biotechnology: A Key Role for Verifiable Information," Staff General Research Papers, Iowa State University, Department of Economics 10435, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  3. Schultz, Theodore W, 1975. "The Value of the Ability to Deal with Disequilibria," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 13(3), pages 827-46, September.
  4. Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin, 2002. "Social Value of Public Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1521-1534, December.
  5. Huffman, Wallace E. & Rousu, Matthew & Shogren, Jason F. & Tegene, Abebayehu, 2007. "The effects of prior beliefs and learning on consumers' acceptance of genetically modified foods," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 193-206, May.
  6. John Beshears & James J. Choi & David Laibson & Brigitte C. Madrian, 2005. "The importance of default options for retirement saving outcomes: evidence from the United States," CeRP Working Papers 43, Center for Research on Pensions and Welfare Policies, Turin (Italy).
  7. Matthew Rousu & Wallace E. Huffman & Jason F. Shogren & Abebayehu Tegene, 2007. "Effects And Value Of Verifiable Information In A Controversial Market: Evidence From Lab Auctions Of Genetically Modified Food," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 45(3), pages 409-432, 07.
  8. Huffman, Wallace & Just, Richard E., 2000. "Setting Efficient Incentives for Agricultural Research: Lessons from Principal-Agent Theory," Staff General Research Papers, Iowa State University, Department of Economics 5040, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  9. Joseph E. Stiglitz, 2000. "The Contributions Of The Economics Of Information To Twentieth Century Economics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 115(4), pages 1441-1478, November.
  10. Amos Tversky & Daniel Kahneman, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Levine's Working Paper Archive 7656, David K. Levine.
  11. Huffman, Wallace, 2001. "Human Capital, Education, and Agriculture," Staff General Research Papers, Iowa State University, Department of Economics 10438, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  12. James J. Choi & David Laibson & Brigitte C. Madrian, 2005. "Are Empowerment and Education Enough? Underdiversification in 401(k) Plans," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 36(2), pages 151-214.
  13. Huffman, Wallace E. & Orazem, Peter F., 2007. "Agriculture and Human Capital in Economic Growth: Farmers, Schooling and Nutrition," Handbook of Agricultural Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier.
  14. Viscusi, W Kip, 1997. "Alarmist Decisions with Divergent Risk Information," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(445), pages 1657-70, November.
  15. Hartog,Joop & Maassen van den Brink,Henriƫtte (ed.), 2007. "Human Capital," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521873161.
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