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An analysis of bounded rationality in judicial litigations: the case with loss/disappointment averses plaintiffs

  • Langlais, Eric

For psychologists, bounded rationality reflects the presence of cognitive dissonance and/or inconsistency, revealing that people use heuristics (Tversky and Kahneman (1974)) rather than sophisticated processes for the assessment of their beliefs. Recent research analyzing litigations and pretrial negotiations also focused on boundedly rational litigants (Bar-Gill (2005), Farmer and Peccorino (2002)) relying on a naïve modelling of the self-serving bias. Our paper in contrast introduces the case for disappointment averse litigants, relying on the axiomatic of Gull (1991). We show that this leads to a richer analysis in comparative statics; at the same time, this proves to be … disappointing: for the purposes of public policies in favour of the access to justice, recommendations are quite ambiguous.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 22291.

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Date of creation: Apr 2010
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:22291
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  1. Ichino, Andrea & Polo, Michele & Rettore, Enrico, 2003. "Are judges biased by labor market conditions?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(5), pages 913-944, October.
  2. Farber, Henry S & Bazerman, Max H, 1987. "Why Is There Disagreement in Bargaining?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(2), pages 347-52, May.
  3. Grant, Simon & Kajii, Atsushi & Polak, Ben, 2001. "Different notions of disappointment aversion," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 70(2), pages 203-208, February.
  4. Hausken, Kjell, 2005. "The battle of the sexes when the future is important," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 89-93, April.
  5. Farmer, Amy & Pecorino, Paul, 2002. "Pretrial bargaining with self-serving bias and asymmetric information," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 163-176, June.
  6. Viscusi, W Kip, 2001. "Jurors, Judges, and the Mistreatment of Risk by the Courts," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 30(1), pages 107-42, January.
  7. Gul, Faruk, 1991. "A Theory of Disappointment Aversion," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(3), pages 667-86, May.
  8. Linda Babcock & George Loewenstein, 1997. "Explaining Bargaining Impasse: The Role of Self-Serving Biases," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(1), pages 109-126, Winter.
  9. Lucian Arye Bebchuk, 1984. "Litigation and Settlement under Imperfect Information," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(3), pages 404-415, Autumn.
  10. George L. Priest & Benjamin Klein, 1984. "The Selection of Disputes for Litigation," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 13(1), pages 1-56, January.
  11. Ulrich Schmidt & Horst Zank, 2005. "What is Loss Aversion?," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 30(2), pages 157-167, January.
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