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Performance of Procrastinators: On the Value of Deadlines

  • Fabian Herweg
  • Daniel Müller


Earlier work has shown that procrastination can be explained by quasi-hyperbolic discounting. We present a model of effort choice over time that shifts the focus away from completion to performance on a single task. We show that quasi-hyperbolic discounting is detrimental for performance. More intrestingly, we find that being aware of the own self-control problems not necessarily increases performance. Extending this framework to a multi-task model, we show that deadlines help an agent to structure his workload more efficiently, which in turn leads to better performance. Moreover, being restricted by deadlines increases a quasi-hyperbolic discounter's well-being. Thus, we give a theoretical underpinning for recent empirical evidence and numerous casual observations.

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Paper provided by University of Bonn, Germany in its series Bonn Econ Discussion Papers with number bgse3_2008.

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Length: 32
Date of creation: 23 Jan 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bon:bonedp:bgse3_2008
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