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Decision making in the newsvendor problem: A cross-national laboratory study


  • Feng, Tianjun
  • Keller, L. Robin
  • Zheng, Xiaona


In this paper, we conduct a laboratory experiment using the classic newsvendor problem to examine cross-national differences in inventory ordering patterns between Chinese and American decision makers based on a theoretical examination of the role of the Doctrine of the Mean in Chinese decision making. Drawing on the theory of context-dependent preferences (specifically extremeness aversion), we also revisit the flat-maximum hypothesis of Bolton and Katok [12], i.e., "thinning the set of order options leads to newsvendor decisions that achieve a higher proportion of maximum expected profit." The results show that the "pull-to-center" effect is more prominent for Chinese than Americans, i.e., average order quantities of Chinese subjects are closer to the anchor of mean demand than those of American subjects. Furthermore, we find that thinning the set of order options such that the optimal order quantity is a middle option, not an extreme option in the choice set, leads to better performance in newsvendor decisions, which complements the flat-maximum hypothesis.

Suggested Citation

  • Feng, Tianjun & Keller, L. Robin & Zheng, Xiaona, 2011. "Decision making in the newsvendor problem: A cross-national laboratory study," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 41-50, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jomega:v:39:y:2011:i:1:p:41-50

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    10. Gary E. Bolton & Elena Katok, 2008. "Learning by Doing in the Newsvendor Problem: A Laboratory Investigation of the Role of Experience and Feedback," Manufacturing & Service Operations Management, INFORMS, vol. 10(3), pages 519-538, September.
    11. Igbaria, M & Zviran, M, 1991. "End-user effectiveness: A cross-cultural examination," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 19(5), pages 369-379.
    12. Loch, Christoph H. & Wu, Yaozhong, 2007. "Behavioral Operations Management," Foundations and Trends(R) in Technology, Information and Operations Management, now publishers, vol. 1(3), pages 121-232, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Arshavskiy V. & Okulov V. & Smirnova A., 2014. "Newsvendor Problem Experiments: Riskiness of the Decisions and Learning by Experience," International Journal of Business and Social Research, MIR Center for Socio-Economic Research, vol. 4(5), pages 137-150, May.
    2. Chen, Xu & Hao, Gang & Li, Ling, 2014. "Channel coordination with a loss-averse retailer and option contracts," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 150(C), pages 52-57.
    3. Lee, Peter K.C. & Cheng, T.C. Edwin & Yeung, Andy C.L. & Lai, Kee-hung, 2011. "An empirical study of transformational leadership, team performance and service quality in retail banks," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 39(6), pages 690-701, December.
    4. repec:eee:enepol:v:109:y:2017:i:c:p:579-589 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Özalp Özer & Yanchong Zheng & Yufei Ren, 2014. "Trust, Trustworthiness, and Information Sharing in Supply Chains Bridging China and the United States," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 60(10), pages 2435-2460, October.
    6. Chow, Pui-Sze & Wang, Yulan & Choi, Tsan-Ming & Shen, Bin, 2015. "An experimental study on the effects of minimum profit share on supply chains with markdown contract: Risk and profit analysis," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 57(PA), pages 85-97.
    7. repec:eee:proeco:v:210:y:2019:i:c:p:72-83 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. repec:eee:jomega:v:82:y:2019:i:c:p:132-141 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Halkos, George & Kevork, Ilias, 2012. "Unbiased estimation of maximum expected profits in the Newsvendor Model: a case study analysis," MPRA Paper 40724, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    10. Arcelus, F.J. & Kumar, Satyendra & Srinivasan, G., 2012. "Risk tolerance and a retailer's pricing and ordering policies within a newsvendor framework," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 40(2), pages 188-198, April.
    11. Hu, Benyong & Meng, Chao & Xu, Dong & Son, Young-Jun, 2016. "Three-echelon supply chain coordination with a loss-averse retailer and revenue sharing contracts," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 179(C), pages 192-202.
    12. Xinsheng, Xu & Zhiqing, Meng & Rui, Shen & Min, Jiang & Ping, Ji, 2015. "Optimal decisions for the loss-averse newsvendor problem under CVaR," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 164(C), pages 146-159.
    13. repec:spr:cejnor:v:27:y:2019:i:2:d:10.1007_s10100-018-0589-9 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Strohhecker, Jürgen & Größler, Andreas, 2013. "Do personal traits influence inventory management performance?—The case of intelligence, personality, interest and knowledge," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 142(1), pages 37-50.
    15. repec:eee:ejores:v:274:y:2019:i:2:p:574-600 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. repec:eee:ejores:v:276:y:2019:i:1:p:217-234 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Schiffels, Sebastian & Fügener, Andreas & Kolisch, Rainer & Jens Brunner, O., 2014. "On the assessment of costs in a newsvendor environment: Insights from an experimental study," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 1-8.
    18. Xinsheng Xu & Zhiqing Meng & Ping Ji & Chuangyin Dang & Hongwei Wang, 2016. "On the newsvendor model with conditional Value-at-Risk of opportunity loss," International Journal of Production Research, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 54(8), pages 2449-2458, April.
    19. repec:eee:ejores:v:269:y:2018:i:2:p:715-729 is not listed on IDEAS
    20. Banerjee, Pradeep K. & Turner, T. Rolf, 2012. "A flexible model for the pricing of perishable assets," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 40(5), pages 533-540.
    21. Huang, Di & Zhou, Hong & Zhao, Qiu-Hong, 2011. "A competitive multiple-product newsboy problem with partial product substitution," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 302-312, June.
    22. Christian Köster & Heike Y. Schenk-Mathes, 2016. "Explanatory and predictive power of the adaptive learning model: average and heterogeneous behavior in a newsvendor context," Journal of Business Economics, Springer, vol. 86(4), pages 361-387, May.
    23. repec:eee:proeco:v:203:y:2018:i:c:p:134-153 is not listed on IDEAS


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