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Innovation and Information Acquisition Under Time Inconsistency and Uncertainty

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  • Sophie Chemarin
  • Caroline Orset

Abstract

We propose to analyse the hyperbolic discounting preferences effect on the innovator's research investment decision. Investing in research allows him to acquire information, and then to reduce the uncertainty of the risks of his project. We find that whatever the innovator's preferences, that is hyperbolic or time-consistent, there exists a research investment constraint that limits the information acquisition. However, even if the information is free, while a time-consistent agent always acquires information, a hyperbolic agent may prefer staying ignorant. We also emphasize that hyperbolic discounting preferences induce and information precision constraint that leads the hyperbolic innovator to ignore the information whilethe time-consistent innovator gets it. Moreover, the possibility that the agent has a commitment power in the future strengthens this ignorance strategy. Finally, we investigate the impact of existing liability rules on the innovator's decision to acquire information.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CIRPEE in its series Cahiers de recherche with number 0810.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:lvl:lacicr:0810

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Keywords: Innovation; information acquisition; uncertainty; self-control; time inconsistency; liability rules;

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  1. Carrillo, Juan D & Mariotti, Thomas, 2000. "Strategic Ignorance as a Self-Disciplining Device," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(3), pages 529-44, July.
  2. Roland Bénabou & Jean Tirole, 2002. "Self-Confidence And Personal Motivation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(3), pages 871-915, August.
  3. Salanie, Francois & Treich, Nicolas, 2006. "Over-savings and hyperbolic discounting," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1557-1570, August.
  4. Brocas, Isabelle & Carrillo, Juan D., 2000. "The value of information when preferences are dynamically inconsistent," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(4-6), pages 1104-1115, May.
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