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Preference Learning in Consecutive Experimental Auctions

  • Shogren, Jason F.
  • List, John
  • Hayes, Dermot J.

This paper explores the origins of the strikingly high price premia paid for new food products in lab valuation exercises. Our experimental design distinguishes between two explanations of this phenomenon: novelty of the experimental experience versus the novelty of the good, i.e., preference learningï¾—bids reflect a personï¾’s desire to learn how an unfamiliar good fits into their preference set. Subjects bid in four consecutive experimental auctions for three goods that vary in familiarity, candy bars, mangos, and irradiated meat. Our results suggest that preference learning is the main source of the high premia, and that novelty of the experimental experience does not in itself artificially inflate valuations.

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Paper provided by Iowa State University, Department of Economics in its series Staff General Research Papers with number 5023.

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Date of creation: 01 Nov 2000
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in American Journal of Agricultural Economics, November 2000, vol. 82 no. 4, pp. 1016-1021
Handle: RePEc:isu:genres:5023
Contact details of provider: Postal: Iowa State University, Dept. of Economics, 260 Heady Hall, Ames, IA 50011-1070
Phone: +1 515.294.6741
Fax: +1 515.294.0221
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