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Imitation with intention and memory: An experiment

  • Matthey, Astrid

The experiment described in this paper analyzes imitation in an individual learning context. It supplements the results obtained for imitation in evolutionary processes. The paper makes three main contributions. First, it provides a clear distinction between intentional imitation and genuine learning. Second, it shows that players consider more than just last period's performance when choosing imitation examples. This contrasts with the assumption in most theoretical and experimental research. Third, since the design makes imitation explicit, it allows a detailed analysis of imitation behavior, showing that players do not imitate rationally.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics).

Volume (Year): 39 (2010)
Issue (Month): 5 (October)
Pages: 585-594

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Handle: RePEc:eee:soceco:v:39:y:2010:i:5:p:585-594
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/620175

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  1. Josephson, Jens & Matros, Alexander, 2004. "Stochastic imitation in finite games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 244-259, November.
  2. Fudenberg, Drew & Imhof, Lorens A., 2006. "Imitation processes with small mutations," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 131(1), pages 251-262, November.
  3. David K Levine & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 2005. "Evolution of Cooperation Through Imitation," Levine's Working Paper Archive 7630, David K. Levine.
  4. Carlo Altavilla & Luigi Luini & Patrizia Sbriglia, 2005. "Social Learning in Market Games," Labsi Experimental Economics Laboratory University of Siena 003, University of Siena.
  5. Schlag, Karl H., 1999. "Which one should I imitate?," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 493-522, May.
  6. Levine, David K. & Pesendorfer, Wolfgang, 2007. "The evolution of cooperation through imitation," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 293-315, February.
  7. Karl H. Schlag, 1995. "Why Imitate, and if so, How? A Bounded Rational Approach to Multi-Armed Bandits," Discussion Paper Serie B 361, University of Bonn, Germany, revised Mar 1996.
  8. Huck, Steffen & Normann, Hans-Theo & Oechssler, Jorg, 1999. "Learning in Cournot Oligopoly--An Experiment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(454), pages C80-95, March.
  9. James Bergin & Dan Bernhardt, 1999. "Comparative Dynamics," Working Papers 981, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  10. Fernando Vega-Redondo, 1997. "The Evolution of Walrasian Behavior," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(2), pages 375-384, March.
  11. Carlos Alós-Ferrer, 2001. "Cournot versus Walras in Dynamic Oligopolies with Memory," Vienna Economics Papers 0110, University of Vienna, Department of Economics.
  12. Schlag, Karl H., 1994. "Why Imitate, and if so, How? Exploring a Model of Social Evolution," Discussion Paper Serie B 296, University of Bonn, Germany.
  13. Antoni Bosch-DomËnech & Nicolaas J. Vriend, 2003. "Imitation of successful behaviour in cournot markets," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(487), pages 495-524, 04.
  14. Selten, Reinhard & Apesteguia, Jose, 2005. "Experimentally observed imitation and cooperation in price competition on the circle," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 171-192, April.
  15. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
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