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Are small groups expected utility?

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  • Morone, Andrea
  • Morone, Piergiuseppe

Abstract

In this paper we analyse the empirical performance of several preference functionals using individual and group data. Our investigation aims to address two fundamental questions that have, until now, not been addressed in literature. Specifically, we intend to assess if there exists a risky choice theory that statistically fits group decisions significantly better than alternative theories, and if there are significant differences between individual and group choices. Experimental findings reported in this paper provide answers to both questions showing that when risky choices are undertaken by small groups (dyads in our case), disappointment aversion outperforms several alternative preference functionals, including expected utility. Since expected utility typically emerged as the dominant model in individual risky choices, this finding suggests that differences between individual and group choices exist, showing that the preference aggregation process drives out EU.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 38198.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:38198

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Keywords: group decision; expected utility; risk and uncertainty;

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References

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  1. Andrea Morone, 2004. "Comparison of Mean-Variance theory and Expected-Utility theory through a Laboratory Experiment," Experimental 0402001, EconWPA.
  2. Ian Bateman & Alistair Munro, 2005. "An Experiment on Risky Choice Amongst Households," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(502), pages C176-C189, 03.
  3. Sutter, Matthias & Kocher, Martin G. & Strauß, Sabine, 2009. "Individuals and teams in auctions," Munich Reprints in Economics 18185, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  4. Matthias Sutter, 2008. "Individual behavior and group membership: Comment," Jena Economic Research Papers 2008-075, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Max-Planck-Institute of Economics.
  5. Martin Kocher & Matthias Sutter, 2007. "Individual versus group behavior and the role of the decision making procedure in gift-exchange experiments," Empirica, Springer, vol. 34(1), pages 63-88, March.
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  7. Masclet, David & Colombier, Nathalie & Denant-Boemont, Laurent & Lohéac, Youenn, 2009. "Group and individual risk preferences: A lottery-choice experiment with self-employed and salaried workers," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 70(3), pages 470-484, June.
  8. John Hey, 2001. "Does Repetition Improve Consistency?," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 4(1), pages 5-54, June.
  9. David J. Cooper & John H. Kagel, 2005. "Are Two Heads Better Than One? Team versus Individual Play in Signaling Games," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(3), pages 477-509, June.
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  16. Martin G. Kocher & Matthias Sutter, 2005. "The Decision Maker Matters: Individual Versus Group Behaviour in Experimental Beauty-Contest Games," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(500), pages 200-223, 01.
  17. Andreoni, James & Petrie, Ragan, 2008. "Beauty, gender and stereotypes: Evidence from laboratory experiments," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 73-93, February.
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  19. Matthias Sutter, 2004. "Are four heads better than two? An experimental beauty-contest game with teams of different size," Papers on Strategic Interaction 2004-15, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Strategic Interaction Group.
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  23. Bone, John & Hey, John & Suckling, John, 1999. "Are Groups More (or Less) Consistent Than Individuals?," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 18(1), pages 63-81, April.
  24. Quiggin, John, 1982. "A theory of anticipated utility," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 323-343, December.
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Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. How group utility differs from individual utility
    by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2012-05-14 14:13:00
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Cited by:
  1. Michailova, Julija, 2010. "Overconfidence, risk aversion and (economic) behavior of individual traders in experimental asset markets," MPRA Paper 26390, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Ozlem Ozdemir & Andrea Morone, 2012. "Black Swan Protection: an Experimental Investigation," Working Papers 2012/12, Economics Department, Universitat Jaume I, Castellón (Spain).
  3. Suter, Jordan F. & Spraggon, John M. & Poe, Gregory L., 2011. "Thin and lumpy: an experimental investigation of water quality trading," 2011 Annual Meeting, July 24-26, 2011, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 104023, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.

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