Whom to Observe?
AbstractThis paper considers the problem of a decision maker who is faced with a dynamic decision problem with several alternatives, and additionally can engage in prior consultation on one of the alternatives. Information received from others is coarse. When consulting on an alternative that the decision maker is pre-disposed to, she either consults someone that shares precisely her convictions, or she consults someone who is more ”picky” than herself. Optimality depends on the attractiveness of alternatives; when another alternative becomes suﬃciently attractive the decision maker prefers a picky contact. When the decisionmaker consults on a lower ranked alternative, optimal consulting depends non-monotonically on the value of the alternative she is pre-disposed to. For high and low values of the pre-disposed alternative she prefers to consult someone with her own convictions, but for medium values she prefers to consult a picky contact. Finally a decision maker may prefer to consult on a lower ranked alternative.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 8773.
Date of creation: 01 Dec 2006
Date of revision: 14 May 2008
bandit problem; observational learning; heterogeneity;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search, Learning, and Information
- C7 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2008-05-24 (All new papers)
- NEP-CDM-2008-05-24 (Collective Decision-Making)
- NEP-GTH-2008-05-24 (Game Theory)
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