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Procrastination and Impatience

Author

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  • Reuben, Ernesto
  • Sapienza, Paola
  • Zingales, Luigi

Abstract

There is a large body of literature documenting both a preference for immediacy and a tendency to procrastinate. O'Donoghue and Rabin (1999a,b, 2001) and Choi et al. (2005) model these behaviours as two faces of the same phenomenon. In this paper, we use a combination of lab, field, and survey evidence to study whether these two types of behaviour are indeed linked. To measure immediacy we had subjects choose between a series of smaller-sooner and larger-later rewards. Both rewards were paid with a check in order to control for transaction costs. To measure procrastination we use the subjects' actual behaviour in cashing the check and completing tasks on time. Our results lend support to the hypothesis that subjects who have a preference for immediacy are indeed more likely to procrastinate.

Suggested Citation

  • Reuben, Ernesto & Sapienza, Paola & Zingales, Luigi, 2008. "Procrastination and Impatience," CEPR Discussion Papers 6668, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:6668
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Reuben, Ernesto & Sapienza, Paola & Zingales, Luigi, 2015. "Procrastination and impatience," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 58(C), pages 63-76.
    2. Daniel J. Benjamin & James J. Choi & Geoffrey Fisher, 2016. "Religious Identity and Economic Behavior," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 98(4), pages 617-637, October.
    3. Jansen, Anika & Pfeifer, Harald & Raecke, Julia, "undated". "Only the brave? Risk and time preferences of decision makers and firms’ investment in worker training," Research Memorandum 004, Maastricht University, Graduate School of Business and Economics (GSBE).
    4. Non, Arjan & Tempelaar, Dirk, 2016. "Time preferences, study effort, and academic performance," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 36-61.
    5. repec:ubc:pmicro:yoram_halevy-2012-19 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Himmler, Oliver & Jaeckle, Robert & Weinschenk, Philipp, 2017. "Soft Commitments, Reminders and Academic Performance," MPRA Paper 76832, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Reuben, Ernesto & Sapienza, Paola & Zingales, Luigi, 2010. "Time discounting for primary and monetary rewards," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 106(2), pages 125-127, February.
    8. repec:ran:wpaper:895 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Novarese, Marco & Di Giovinazzo, Viviana, 2013. "Promptness and Academic Performance," MPRA Paper 49746, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    behaviour; impatience; procrastination;

    JEL classification:

    • D00 - Microeconomics - - General - - - General
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates

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