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Intertemporal Decision Making with Present Biased Preferences

Listed author(s):
  • Zafer Akin

I study the behavior of individuals with present biased preferences who are involved in costly, long-run projects. By using generic cost and reward functions, I characterize the behaviors of the sophisticated, partial naive and naive types. It is shown that there may arise cases where naives needlessly put effort on projects they never complete. Moreover, in endogenous total cost projects, the naive types always end up completing projects of lesser quality than originally intended. By introducing a bonus motive, it is shown that agents with higher self-control problems should be given a higher bonus to prevent inefficient procrastination. I, then, characterize the behavior of partially naives who potentially learn self-preferences. It is found that without learning self-preferences, partial naives behave either like sophisticates or naives depending on the level of naivete; with learning, if the learning pace is fast enough, procrastination until the deadline does not occur.

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File URL: http://ikt.web.etu.edu.tr/RePEc/pdf/1001.pdf
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Paper provided by TOBB University of Economics and Technology, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1001.

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Date of creation: Feb 2010
Handle: RePEc:tob:wpaper:1001
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  1. Fabian Herweg & Daniel Müller, 2008. "Performance of Procrastinators: On the Value of Deadlines," Bonn Econ Discussion Papers bgse3_2008, University of Bonn, Germany.
  2. O'Donoghue, Ted & Rabin, Matthew, 2002. "Procrastination on Long-Term Projects," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt5jv059fq, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  3. Grossman, Sanford J & Hart, Oliver, 1985. "The Cost and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," CEPR Discussion Papers 70, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Zafer Akin, 2007. "Time inconsistency and learning in bargaining games," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer;Game Theory Society, vol. 36(2), pages 275-299, October.
  5. Stefano DellaVigna & Ulrike Malmendier, 2006. "Paying Not to Go to the Gym," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(3), pages 694-719, June.
  6. Gilpatric, Scott M., 2008. "Present-biased preferences, self-awareness and shirking," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 67(3-4), pages 735-754, September.
  7. David Laibson, 1997. "Golden Eggs and Hyperbolic Discounting," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(2), pages 443-478.
  8. Fischer, Carolyn, 1999. "Read This Paper Even Later: Procrastination with Time-Inconsistent Preferences," Discussion Papers dp-99-20, Resources For the Future.
  9. Ted O' Donoghue and Matthew Rabin., 2000. "Choice and Procrastination," Economics Working Papers E00-281, University of California at Berkeley.
  10. Zafer Akin, 2008. "Imperfect Information Processing in Sequential Bargaining Games with Present Biased Preferences," Working Papers 0810, TOBB University of Economics and Technology, Department of Economics.
  11. Rubinstein, Ariel, 1982. "Perfect Equilibrium in a Bargaining Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(1), pages 97-109, January.
  12. Matthew Rabin & Joel L. Schrag, 1999. "First Impressions Matter: A Model of Confirmatory Bias," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 37-82.
  13. Ted O'Donoghue and Matthew Rabin ., 1997. "Doing It Now or Later," Economics Working Papers 97-253, University of California at Berkeley.
  14. Laibson, David, 1998. "Life-cycle consumption and hyperbolic discount functions," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-5), pages 861-871, May.
  15. David I. Laibson & Andrea Repetto & Jeremy Tobacman, 1998. "Self-Control and Saving for Retirement," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 29(1), pages 91-196.
  16. Jonathan Gruber & Botond Köszegi, 2001. "Is Addiction "Rational"? Theory and Evidence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(4), pages 1261-1303.
  17. Ted O'Donoghue & Matthew Rabin, 1999. "Incentives for Procrastinators," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 769-816.
  18. Wong, Wei-Kang, 2008. "How much time-inconsistency is there and does it matter? Evidence on self-awareness, size, and effects," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 68(3-4), pages 645-656, December.
  19. E. S. Phelps & R. A. Pollak, 1968. "On Second-Best National Saving and Game-Equilibrium Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 35(2), pages 185-199.
  20. Akerlof, George A, 1991. "Procrastination and Obedience," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(2), pages 1-19, May.
  21. Yianis Sarafidis, 2004. "Inter-temporal Price Discrimination with Time Inconsistent Consumers," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 479, Econometric Society.
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