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The best choice problem under ambiguity

  • Tatjana Chudjakow
  • Frank Riedel


We model and solve best choice problems in the multiple prior framework: An ambiguity averse decision maker aims to choose the best among a fixed number of applicants that appear sequentially in a random order. The agent faces ambiguity about the probability that a candidate—a relatively top applicant—is actually best among all applicants. We show that our model covers the classical secretary problem, but also other interesting classes of problems. We provide a closed form solution of the problem for time-consistent priors using backward induction. As in the classical case, the derived stopping strategy is simple. Ambiguity can lead to substantial differences to the classical threshold rule. Copyright Springer-Verlag 2013

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Article provided by Springer in its journal Economic Theory.

Volume (Year): 54 (2013)
Issue (Month): 1 (September)
Pages: 77-97

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Handle: RePEc:spr:joecth:v:54:y:2013:i:1:p:77-97
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  1. J. Neil Bearden & Amnon Rapoport & Ryan O. Murphy, 2006. "Sequential Observation and Selection with Rank-Dependent Payoffs: An Experimental Study," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(9), pages 1437-1449, September.
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  6. Simone Cerreia-Vioglio & Paolo Ghirardato & Fabio Maccheroni & Massimo Marinacci & Marciano Siniscalchi, 2010. "Rational Preferences under Ambiguity," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 169, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
  7. Alain Chateauneuf & Fabio Macheronni & Massimo Marinacci & Jean-Marc Tallon, 2005. "Monotone continuous multiple priors," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00177057, HAL.
  8. Luciano Castro & Alain Chateauneuf, 2011. "Ambiguity aversion and trade," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 48(2), pages 243-273, October.
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  10. Frank Riedel, 2009. "Optimal Stopping With Multiple Priors," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 77(3), pages 857-908, 05.
  11. Itzhak Gilboa & David Schmeidler, 1989. "Maxmin Expected Utility with Non-Unique Prior," Post-Print hal-00753237, HAL.
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