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The Paradox of Misaligned Profiling: Theory and Experimental Evidence

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  • Holt, Charles
  • Kydd, Andrew
  • Razzolini, Laura
  • Sheremeta, Roman

Abstract

This paper implements an experimental test of a game-theoretic model of equilibrium profiling. Attackers choose a demographic “type” from which to recruit, and defenders choose which demographic types to search. Some types are more reliable than others in the sense of having a higher probability of carrying out a successful attack if they get past the security checkpoint. In a Nash equilibrium, defenders tend to profile by searching the more reliable attacker types more frequently, whereas the attackers tend to send less reliable types. Data from laboratory experiments with financially motivated human subjects are consistent with the qualitative patterns predicted by theory. However, we also find several interesting behavioral deviations from the theory.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 56508.

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Date of creation: 20 May 2014
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:56508

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Keywords: terrorism; profiling; game theory; laboratory experiment;

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  1. John Knowles & Nicola Persico & Petra Todd, . "Racial Bias in Motor Vehicle Searches: Theory and Evidence," Penn CARESS Working Papers, Penn Economics Department 5940d5c4875c571776fb29700, Penn Economics Department.
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  11. Sheremeta, Roman, 2013. "Overbidding and Heterogeneous Behavior in Contest Experiments," MPRA Paper, University Library of Munich, Germany 44124, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  12. Jacob Goeree & Charles Holt & Thomas Palfrey, 2005. "Regular Quantal Response Equilibrium," Experimental Economics, Springer, Springer, vol. 8(4), pages 347-367, December.
  13. McKelvey Richard D. & Palfrey Thomas R., 1995. "Quantal Response Equilibria for Normal Form Games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 6-38, July.
  14. Atin Basuchoudhary & Laura Razzolini, 2006. "Hiding in plain sight – using signals to detect terrorists," Public Choice, Springer, Springer, vol. 128(1), pages 245-255, July.
  15. P.-A. Chiappori, 2002. "Testing Mixed-Strategy Equilibria When Players Are Heterogeneous: The Case of Penalty Kicks in Soccer," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 92(4), pages 1138-1151, September.
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