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Bias-Trigger Manipulation and Task-Form Understanding in Monty Hall

Author

Listed:
  • Kim Kaivanto

    () (Lancaster University)

  • Eike B. Kroll

    () (Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg)

  • Michael Zabinski

    () (Trinity College Dublin)

Abstract

Monty Hall is a difficult task which triggers multiple biases. With sophisticated subjects and treatments that reverse and eliminate these triggers, non-rational choice is greatly reduced. Among task-familiar subjects, non-rational choice can can fall to background-error levels. But as our data also show, task-form recognition is necessary but not sufficient for rational choice when the task calls for conditional probability reasoning rather than simple rule-based behavior, as in e.g. 'Switch in Monty Hall.' Task-form understanding, a more stringent requirement, proves to be necessary and sufficient for rational choice in generalized Monty Hall conditional probability reasoning tasks.

Suggested Citation

  • Kim Kaivanto & Eike B. Kroll & Michael Zabinski, 2014. "Bias-Trigger Manipulation and Task-Form Understanding in Monty Hall," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 34(1), pages 89-98.
  • Handle: RePEc:ebl:ecbull:eb-13-00860
    as

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    File URL: http://www.accessecon.com/Pubs/EB/2014/Volume34/EB-14-V34-I1-P10.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Samuelson, William & Zeckhauser, Richard, 1988. "Status Quo Bias in Decision Making," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 7-59, March.
    2. Slembeck, Tilman & Tyran, Jean-Robert, 2004. "Do institutions promote rationality?: An experimental study of the three-door anomaly," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 54(3), pages 337-350, July.
    3. Ferraro Paul J & Vossler Christian A, 2010. "The Source and Significance of Confusion in Public Goods Experiments," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 10(1), pages 1-42, July.
    4. Rydval, Ondrej & Ortmann, Andreas, 2004. "How financial incentives and cognitive abilities affect task performance in laboratory settings: an illustration," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 85(3), pages 315-320, December.
    5. Ignacio Palacios-Huerta, 2003. "Learning to Open Monty Hall's Doors," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 6(3), pages 235-251, November.
    6. Friedman, Daniel, 1998. "Monty Hall's Three Doors: Construction and Deconstruction of a Choice Anomaly," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(4), pages 933-946, September.
    7. Eileen Chou & Margaret McConnell & Rosemarie Nagel & Charles Plott, 2009. "The control of game form recognition in experiments: understanding dominant strategy failures in a simple two person “guessing” game," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 12(2), pages 159-179, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Kaivanto, Kim & Kwon, Winston, 2015. "The Precautionary Principle as a Heuristic Patch," MPRA Paper 67036, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Monty Hall; task-form understanding; bias triggers; default effect; illusion of control; errors of omission and commission;

    JEL classification:

    • D8 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty
    • C9 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments

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