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The essential economics of threshold-based incentives: Theory, estimation, and evidence from the Western States 100

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  • Grant, Darren

Abstract

Many public and private entities utilize incentive systems in which improvements in measured performance are rewarded only when the agent crosses some pre-specified threshold. This paper comprehensively analyzes the effects of these incentive systems on effort, the net benefits of effort, and the accuracy of information about agents’ performance, and lays out methods for estimating each. These methods are then used to reveal the motivations, physiological limits, and racing strategy of ultramarathoners trying to complete a one hundred mile race in under twenty-four hours.

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  • Grant, Darren, 2016. "The essential economics of threshold-based incentives: Theory, estimation, and evidence from the Western States 100," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 130(C), pages 180-197.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:130:y:2016:i:c:p:180-197
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2016.07.013
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    Cited by:

    1. Sascha Baghestanian & Sergey V. Popov, 2018. "On publication, refereeing and working hard," Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 51(4), pages 1419-1459, November.
    2. Mariya Burdina & Scott Hiller, 2021. "When Falling Just Short is a Good Thing: The Effect of Past Performance on Improvement," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 22(7), pages 777-798, October.
    3. Baldauf, Markus & Mollner, Joshua, 2019. "Pedaling peers: The effect of targets on performance," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 167(C), pages 90-103.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Thresholds; Behavioral incentives; Ultramarathons;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Restaurants; Recreation; Tourism
    • C14 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Semiparametric and Nonparametric Methods: General
    • D10 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - General

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