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The challenge of representative design in psychology and economics

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Abstract

The demands of representative design, as formulated by Egon Brunswik (1956), set a high methodological standard. Both experimental participants and the situations with which they are faced should be representative of the populations to which researchers claim to generalize results. Failure to observe the latter has led to notable experimental failures in psychology from which economics could learn. It also raises questions about the meaning of testing economic theories in “abstract” environments. Logically, abstract tests can only be generalized to “abstract realities” and these may or may not have anything to do with the “empirical realities” experienced by economic actors.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 751.

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Date of creation: May 2004
Date of revision: Jan 2005
Handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:751

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Web page: http://www.econ.upf.edu/

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Keywords: Experiments; representative design; sampling; Leex;

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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. Robin Hogarth, 2003. "Is confidence in decisions related to feedback? Evidence-and lack of evidence-from random samples of real-world managerial behavior?," Economics Working Papers 655, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Apr 2004.
  3. Camerer, Colin F., 1998. "Prospect Theory in the Wild: Evidence From the Field," Working Papers 1037, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
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Cited by:
  1. repec:dgr:uvatin:2008055 is not listed on IDEAS
  2. Dohmen, Thomas & Falk, Armin & Huffman, David B. & Marklein, Felix & Sunde, Uwe, 2009. "Biased Probability Judgment: Evidence of Incidence and Relationship to Economic Outcomes from a Representative Sample," IZA Discussion Papers 4170, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Rode, Julian & Hogarth, Robin M. & Le Menestrel, Marc, 2008. "Ethical differentiation and market behavior: An experimental approach," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 66(2), pages 265-280, May.
  4. Fiore, Annamaria, 2009. "Experimental Economics: Some Methodological Notes," MPRA Paper 12498, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Rode, Julian & Gómez-Baggethun, Erik & Krause, Torsten, 2013. "Economic incentives for biodiversity conservation: What is the evidence for motivation crowding?," UFZ Discussion Papers 19/2013, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ), Division of Social Sciences (ÖKUS).
  6. Dohmen Thomas & Falk Armin & Huffman David & Marklein Felix & Sunde Uwe, 2008. "Biased Probability Judgment: Representative Evidence for Pervasiveness and Economic Outcomes," ROA Research Memorandum 008, Maastricht University, Research Centre for Education and the Labour Market (ROA).
  7. Daniel Read & Mara Airoldi & G Loewe, 2005. "Intertemporal tradeoffs priced in interest rates and amounts: a study of method variance," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19823, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  8. Rode, Julian, 2010. "Truth and trust in communication: Experiments on the effect of a competitive context," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 325-338, January.
  9. Bolle, Friedel & Kaehler, Jessica, 2007. "Experimenters' choices of trust experiments and their consequence for meta-studies," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 36(6), pages 865-874, December.
  10. John Garvey & Martin Mullins, 2009. "An Examination of "New" and "Old" Terrorism Using High-Frequency Data," Economics of Security Working Paper Series 18, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.

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