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Simulating power of economic experiments: the powerBBK package


  • Charles Bellemare

    () (Laval University)

  • Luc Bissonnette

    () (Laval University)

  • Sabine Kröger

    () (Laval University)


Abstract In this article, we highlight how simulation methods can be used to analyze power of economic experiments. We provide the powerBBK package programmed for experimental economists, that can be used to perform simulations in STATA. Power can be simulated using a single command line for various statistical tests (nonparametric and parametric), estimation methods (linear, binary, and censored regression models), treatment variables (binary, continuous, time-invariant or time varying), sample sizes, experimental periods, and other design features (within or between-subjects design). The package can be used to predict minimum sample sizes required to reach a user-specific level of power, to maximize power of a design given the researcher supplied a budget constraint, or to compute power to detect a user-specified treatment order effect in within-subjects designs. The package can also be used to compute the probability of sign errors—the probability of rejecting the null hypothesis in the wrong direction as well as the share of rejections pointing in the wrong direction. The powerBBK package is provided as an .ado file along with a help file, both of which can be downloaded here ( ).

Suggested Citation

  • Charles Bellemare & Luc Bissonnette & Sabine Kröger, 2016. "Simulating power of economic experiments: the powerBBK package," Journal of the Economic Science Association, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 2(2), pages 157-168, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:jesaex:v:2:y:2016:i:2:d:10.1007_s40881-016-0028-4
    DOI: 10.1007/s40881-016-0028-4

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Uri Gneezy & John A List, 2006. "Putting Behavioral Economics to Work: Testing for Gift Exchange in Labor Markets Using Field Experiments," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 74(5), pages 1365-1384, September.
    2. John List & Sally Sadoff & Mathis Wagner, 2011. "So you want to run an experiment, now what? Some simple rules of thumb for optimal experimental design," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 14(4), pages 439-457, November.
    3. Bellemare, Charles & Shearer, Bruce, 2009. "Gift giving and worker productivity: Evidence from a firm-level experiment," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 233-244, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Eszter Czibor & David Jimenez‐Gomez & John A. List, 2019. "The Dozen Things Experimental Economists Should Do (More of)," Southern Economic Journal, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 86(2), pages 371-432, October.
    2. Nicolas Vallois & Dorian Jullien, 2017. "Estimating Rationality in Economics: A History of Statistical Methods in Experimental Economics," GREDEG Working Papers 2017-20, Groupe de REcherche en Droit, Economie, Gestion (GREDEG CNRS), Université Côte d'Azur, France.
    3. Leah H. Palm-Forster & Paul J. Ferraro & Nicholas Janusch & Christian A. Vossler & Kent D. Messer, 2019. "Behavioral and Experimental Agri-Environmental Research: Methodological Challenges, Literature Gaps, and Recommendations," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 73(3), pages 719-742, July.
    4. Castro, Massimo Finocchiaro & Ferrara, Paolo Lorenzo & Guccio, Calogero & Lisi, Domenico, 2019. "Medical malpractice liability and physicians’ behavior: Experimental evidence," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 166(C), pages 646-666.
    5. Nicolas Vallois & Dorian Jullien, 2018. "A History of Statistical Methods in Experimental Economics," Post-Print halshs-01651070, HAL.
    6. Maurizio Canavari & Andreas C. Drichoutis & Jayson L. Lusk & Rodolfo M. Nayga, Jr., 2018. "How to run an experimental auction: A review of recent advances," Working Papers 2018-5, Agricultural University of Athens, Department Of Agricultural Economics.
    7. Heggedal, Tom-Reiel & Helland, Leif & Neset Joslin, Knut-Eric, 2018. "Should I Stay or should I Go? Bandwagons in the lab," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 150(C), pages 86-97.
    8. Nicolas Vallois & Dorian Jullien, 2017. "Estimating Rationality in Economics: A History of Statistical Methods in Experimental Economics," Working Papers halshs-01651070, HAL.


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