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On eliciting beliefs in strategic games

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  • Palfrey, Thomas R.
  • Wang, Stephanie W.

Abstract

Several recent studies in experimental economics have tried to measure beliefs of subjects engaged in strategic games with other subjects. Using data from one such study we conduct an experiment where our experienced subjects observe early rounds of strategy choices from that study and are given monetary incentives to report forecasts of choices in later rounds. We elicit beliefs using three different scoring rules: linear, logarithmic, and quadratic. We compare forecasts across the scoring rules and compare the forecasts of our trained observers to forecasts of the actual players in the original experiment. We find significant differences across scoring rules. The improper linear scoring rule produces forecasts closer to 0 and 1 than the proper rules, and these forecasts are poorly calibrated. The two proper scoring rules induce significantly different distributions of forecasts. We find that forecasts by observers under both proper scoring rules are significantly different from the forecasts of the actual players, in terms of accuracy, calibration, and the distribution of forecasts. We also find evidence for belief convergence among the observers.
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Suggested Citation

  • Palfrey, Thomas R. & Wang, Stephanie W., "undated". "On eliciting beliefs in strategic games," Working Papers 1271, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  • Handle: RePEc:clt:sswopa:1271
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