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Risk-seeking behavior of preschool children in a gambling task

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  • Moreira, Bruno
  • Matsushita, Raul
  • Da Silva, Sergio

Abstract

A recent neurobiology study showed that monkeys systematically prefer risky targets in a visual gambling task. We set a similar experiment with preschool children to assess their attitudes toward risk and found the children, like the monkeys, to be risk seeking. This suggests that adult humans are not born risk averse, but become risk averse. Our experiment also suggests that this behavioral change may be due to learning from negative experiences in their risky choices. We also showed that though emotional states and predetermined prenatal testosterone can influence children’s preferences toward risk, these factors could not override learning experiences.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 15516.

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Date of creation: 01 Nov 2008
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:15516

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Keywords: Risk; Children;

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  1. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-91, March.
  2. Kip Smith & John Dickhaut & Kevin McCabe & José V. Pardo, 2002. "Neuronal Substrates for Choice Under Ambiguity, Risk, Gains, and Losses," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 48(6), pages 711-718, June.
  3. Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1992. " Advances in Prospect Theory: Cumulative Representation of Uncertainty," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 5(4), pages 297-323, October.
  4. Robson, Arthur J., 1996. "The Evolution of Attitudes to Risk: Lottery Tickets and Relative Wealth," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 190-207, June.
  5. Bechara, Antoine & Damasio, Antonio R., 2005. "The somatic marker hypothesis: A neural theory of economic decision," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 336-372, August.
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Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. Risk aversion is learned behavior
    by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2009-07-21 23:55:00
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Cited by:
  1. HASHIMOTO Hideki & ICHIMURA Hidehiko & SHIMIZUTANI Satoshi, 2013. "Stability of Preference against Aging and Health Shocks: A comparison between Japan and the United States," Discussion papers 13068, Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI).
  2. Matthias Sutter & Martin G. Kocher & Daniela Rützler & Stefan T. Trautmann, 2011. "Impatience and Uncertainty: Experimental Decisions Predict Adolescents' Field Behavior," CESifo Working Paper Series 3635, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Da Silva, Sergio & Baldo, Dinora & Matsushita, Raul, 2011. "Biological correlates of the Allais paradox - updated," MPRA Paper 32747, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Solnais, Céline & Andreu-Perez, Javier & Sánchez-Fernández, Juan & Andréu-Abela, Jaime, 2013. "The contribution of neuroscience to consumer research: A conceptual framework and empirical review," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 68-81.
  5. A. Felipe Rodrigues & Newton Da Costa & Sergio Da Silva, 2011. "Overconfidence and excess entry: a comparison between students and managers," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 31(3), pages 2549-2557.
  6. Sutter, Matthias & Kocher, Martin G. & Rützler, Daniela & Trautmann, Stefan T., 2010. "Impatience and Uncertainty: Experimental Decisions Predict Adolecents' Field Behavior," Discussion Papers in Economics 12114, University of Munich, Department of Economics.

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  1. Economic Logic blog

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