Informational Asymmetries and Observational Learning in Search
As economics modeling moves from super rational decision makers to considering boundedly rational agents, some economic problems deserve a second look. This paper studies the effects of learning on the efficiency of search. Once learning is taken into account, the structure of information flow becomes important. In particular, I highlight the truncated information structure in the search problem. Agents stop searching once a sufficiently attractive price is found. Therefore, they observe the performance of shorter searches, but do not directly observe the performance of longer searches. I design and conduct an experiment to test the hypothesis that this asymmetric flow of information leads agents to search too little. I find strong evidence in its favor. This suggests that in the presence of learning, the provision of a more symmetric information structure will make search more efficient. Copyright Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Roth, Alvin E. & Erev, Ido, 1995. "Learning in extensive-form games: Experimental data and simple dynamic models in the intermediate term," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 164-212.
- Matthew Rabin, 2001.
"Risk Aversion and Expected-Utility Theory: A Calibration Theorem,"
Method and Hist of Econ Thought
- Matthew Rabin, 2000. "Risk Aversion and Expected-Utility Theory: A Calibration Theorem," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1281-1292, September.
- Rabin, Matthew, 2000. "Risk Aversion and Expected-Utility Theory: A Calibration Theorem," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt731230f8, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
- Matthew Rabin, 2001. "Risk Aversion and Expected Utility Theory: A Calibration Theorem," Levine's Working Paper Archive 7667, David K. Levine.
- Matthew Rabin., 2000. "Risk Aversion and Expected-Utility Theory: A Calibration Theorem," Economics Working Papers E00-279, University of California at Berkeley.
- S. Hart & A. Mas-Collel, 2010.
"A Simple Adaptive Procedure Leading to Correlated Equilibrium,"
Levine's Working Paper Archive
572, David K. Levine.
- Sergiu Hart & Andreu Mas-Colell, 2000. "A Simple Adaptive Procedure Leading to Correlated Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1127-1150, September.
- Sergiu Hart & Andreu Mas-Colell, 1996. "A simple adaptive procedure leading to correlated equilibrium," Economics Working Papers 200, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Dec 1996.
- Sergiu Hart & Andreu Mas-Colell, 1997. "A Simple Adaptive Procedure Leading to Correlated Equilibrium," Game Theory and Information 9703006, EconWPA, revised 24 Mar 1997.
- Palfrey, Thomas R. & Goeree, Jacob & Holt, Charles, 2000.
"Quantal Response Equilibrium and Overbidding in Private-value Auctions,"
1073, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
- Goeree, Jacob K. & Holt, Charles A. & Palfrey, Thomas R., 2002. "Quantal Response Equilibrium and Overbidding in Private-Value Auctions," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 104(1), pages 247-272, May.
- Jacob K. Goeree & Charles A. Holt & Thomas R. Palfrey, 2000. "Quantal Response Equilibrium and Overbidding in Private-Value Auctions," Virginia Economics Online Papers 345, University of Virginia, Department of Economics.
- A. Roth & I. Er’ev, 2010. "Learning in Extensive Form Games: Experimental Data and Simple Dynamic Models in the Intermediate Run," Levine's Working Paper Archive 387, David K. Levine.
- Kohn, Meir G. & Shavell, Steven, 1974. "The theory of search," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 93-123, October.
- Thomas Palfrey, 2002. "Quantal Response Equilibrium and Overbidding in Private Value Auctions," Theory workshop papers 357966000000000089, UCLA Department of Economics.
- Schotter, Andrew & Braunstein, Yale M, 1981. "Economic Search: An Experimental Study," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 19(1), pages 1-25, January.
- Butler, David & Loomes, Graham, 1997. "Quasi-rational Search under Incomplete Information: Some Evidence from Experiments," The Manchester School of Economic & Social Studies, University of Manchester, vol. 65(2), pages 127-44, March.
- Hey, John D., 1982. "Search for rules for search," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(1), pages 65-81, March.
- Kogut, Carl A., 1990. "Consumer search behavior and sunk costs," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 381-392, December.
- Sonnemans, Joep, 1998. "Strategies of search," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 309-332, April.
- Berg, Joyce E, et al, 1986. "Controlling Preferences for Lotteries on Units of Experimental Exchange," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 101(2), pages 281-306, May.
- Moon, Philip & Martin, Andrew, 1996. "The search for consistency in economic search," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 311-321, March.
- Selten, Reinhard & Joachim Buchta, 1994. "Experimental Sealed Bid First Price Auctions with Directly Observed Bid Functions," Discussion Paper Serie B 270, University of Bonn, Germany.
- Hey, John D., 1987. "Still searching," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 137-144, March.
- Erev, Ido & Roth, Alvin E, 1998. "Predicting How People Play Games: Reinforcement Learning in Experimental Games with Unique, Mixed Strategy Equilibria," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(4), pages 848-81, September.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:jrisku:v:30:y:2005:i:3:p:241-259. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Guenther Eichhorn)or (Christopher F. Baum)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.