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Revising Commitments: Field Evidence on the Adjustment of Prior Choices

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  • Xavier Giné
  • Jessica Goldberg
  • Dan Silverman
  • Dean Yang

Abstract

We implement an artefactual field experiment in rural Malawi to study revisions of prior choices regarding future income receipts. This allows examination of intertemporal choice revision and its determinants. New tests provide evidence of self†control problems for some participants. Revisions of money allocations towards the present are positively associated with refined measures of present†bias from an earlier survey and with the randomly assigned closeness in time to the first possible date of money disbursement. We find little evidence that revisions of allocations towards the present are associated with spousal preferences for such revision, household shocks, or the financial sophistication of respondents.

Suggested Citation

  • Xavier Giné & Jessica Goldberg & Dan Silverman & Dean Yang, 2018. "Revising Commitments: Field Evidence on the Adjustment of Prior Choices," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 128(608), pages 159-188, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:econjl:v:128:y:2018:i:608:p:159-188
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    File URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/ecoj.12378
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General

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