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Perfect versus imperfect observability---An experimental test of Bagwell's result

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Author Info

  • Steffen Huck

    (Humboldt University Berlin)

  • Wieland Mueller

    (Humboldt University Berlin)

Abstract

In a seminal paper Bagwell (1995) claims that the first mover advantage, i.e. the strategic benefit of committing oneself to an action before others can do, vanishes completely if this action is only imperfectly observed by second movers. In our paper we report on an experimental test of this prediction. We implement three versions of a game similar to an example^? given by Bagwell, each time varying the quality of the signal which informs the second mover. For experienced players we do not find empirical support for Bagwell's result. Instead, we find some support for the noisy Stackelberg equilibrium emphasised by van Damme and Hurkens (1997).

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Experimental with number 9804001.

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Length: 19 pages
Date of creation: 17 Apr 1998
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpex:9804001

Note: Type of Document - ps; prepared on IBM PC; pages: 19 ; figures: included
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Web page: http://128.118.178.162

Related research

Keywords: commitment; first-mover advantage; imperfect observability; experimental economics;

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References

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  1. Georg Kirchsteiger & Werner Güth & Klaus Ritzberger, 1998. "Imperfectly observable commitments in n-player games," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/5907, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  2. Bagwell, Kyle, 1995. "Commitment and observability in games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 271-280.
  3. David K. Levine & Cesar Martinelli, 1997. "Reputation with Noisy Precommitment," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1987, David K. Levine.
  4. van Damme, Eric & Hurkens, Sjaak, 1997. "Games with Imperfectly Observable Commitment," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 21(1-2), pages 282-308, October.
  5. John C. Harsanyi & Reinhard Selten, 1988. "A General Theory of Equilibrium Selection in Games," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262582384, December.
  6. Güth, Werner & Huck, Steffen & Müller, Wieland, 1998. "The relevance of equal splits: On a behavioral discontinuity in ultimatum games," SFB 373 Discussion Papers 1998,7, Humboldt University of Berlin, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes.
  7. Amnon Rapoport, 1997. "Order of Play in Strategically Equivalent Games in Extensive Form," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer, vol. 26(1), pages 113-136.
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