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Risk preference differentials of small groups and individuals

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  • RobertS. Shupp
  • ArlingtonW. Williams

Abstract

This research compares lottery valuation decisions made by individuals with similar decisions made by small groups. There is an extensive social psychology literature addressing group versus individual decision making but few studies explore this issue in economic contexts with cash rewards. Willingness-to-pay data elicited from independent samples of individuals and three-person groups in a repeated-measures experimental design reveal that: the variance of risk preferences is generally smaller for groups than individuals and the average group is "more" risk averse than the average individual in high-risk situations, but groups tend to be "less" risk averse in low-risk situations. Copyright 2008 The Author(s). Journal compilation Royal Economic Society 2008.

Suggested Citation

  • RobertS. Shupp & ArlingtonW. Williams, 2008. "Risk preference differentials of small groups and individuals," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(525), pages 258-283, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:118:y:2008:i:525:p:258-283
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Smith, Vernon L & Walker, James M, 1993. "Monetary Rewards and Decision Cost in Experimental Economics," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 31(2), pages 245-261, April.
    2. Gary Bornstein & Ilan Yaniv, 1998. "Individual and Group Behavior in the Ultimatum Game: Are Groups More “Rational” Players?," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 1(1), pages 101-108, June.
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    6. Charles A. Holt & Susan K. Laury, 2002. "Risk Aversion and Incentive Effects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1644-1655, December.
    7. Ortona, Guido, 1994. "Examining Risk Preferences under High Monetary Incentives: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(4), pages 1104-1104, September.
    8. Kachelmeier, Steven J & Shehata, Mohamed, 1992. "Examining Risk Preferences under High Monetary Incentives: Experimental Evidence from the People's Republic of China," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(5), pages 1120-1141, December.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • D80 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - General

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