Sticking with What (Barely) Worked
AbstractOutcome bias occurs when an evaluator considers ex-post outcomes when judging whether a choice was correct, ex-ante. We formalize this cognitive bias in a simple model of distorted Bayesian updating. We then examine strategy changes made by professional football coaches. We find they are more likely to revise their strategy after a loss than a win — even for narrow losses, which are uninformative about future success. This increased revision following a loss occurs even when a loss was expected, and the offensive strategy is revised even when failure is attributable to the defense. These results are consistent with our model’s predictions.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 17477.
Date of creation: Oct 2011
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- C11 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Bayesian Analysis: General
- D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Economics; Underlying Principles
- D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
- L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Recreation; Tourism
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