Psychological pressure in competitive environments: Evidence from a randomized natural experiment
Much like cognitive abilities, emotional skills can have major effects on perfor mance and economic outcomes. This paper studies the behavior of professional subjects involved in a dynamic competition in their own natural environment. The setting is a penalty shoot-out in soccer where two teams compete in a tournament framework taking turns in a sequence of five penalty kicks each. As the kicking order is determined by the random outcome of a coin flip, the treatment and control groups are determined via explicit randomization. Therefore, absent any psychological effects, both teams should have the same probability of winning regardless of the kicking order. Yet, we find a systematic first-kicker advantage. Using data on 2,731 penalty kicks from 262 shoot-outs for a three decade period, we find that teams kicking first win the penalty shoot-out 60.5% of the time. A dynamic panel data analysis shows that the psychological mechanism underlying this result arises from the asymmetry in the partial score. As most kicks are scored, kicking first typically means having the opportunity to lead in the partial score, whereas kicking second typically means lagging in the score and having the opportunity to, at most, get even. Having a worse prospect than the opponent hinders subjects' performance. Further, we also find that professionals are self-aware of their own psychological effects. When a recent change in regulations gives winners of the coin toss the chance to choose the kicking order, they rationally react to it by systematically choosing to kick first. A survey of professional players reveals that when asked to explain why they prefer to kick first, they precisely identify the psychological mechanism for which we find empirical support in the data: they want “to lead in the score in order to put pressure on the opponent.”
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- James J. Heckman, 2008.
"Schools, Skills, and Synapses,"
NBER Working Papers
14064, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Arellano, Manuel & Carrasco, Raquel, 2003.
"Binary choice panel data models with predetermined variables,"
Journal of Econometrics,
Elsevier, vol. 115(1), pages 125-157, July.
- Arellano, M & Carrasco, R, 1996. "Binary Choice Panel Data Models with Predetermined Variables," Papers 9618, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Y Financieros-.
- Botond Koszegi & Matthew Rabin, 2005.
"A Model of Reference-Dependent Preferences,"
784828000000000341, UCLA Department of Economics.
- Koszegi, Botond & Rabin, Matthew, 2004. "A Model of Reference-Dependent Preferences," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt0w82b6nm, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
- Botond Koszegi & Matthew Rabin, 2004. "A Model of Reference-Dependent Preferences," Method and Hist of Econ Thought 0407001, EconWPA.
- Hans K. Hvide, 2000.
"Tournament Rewards and Risk Taking,"
Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers
0163, Econometric Society.
- Bull, Clive & Schotter, Andrew & Weigelt, Keith, 1985.
"Tournaments and Piece Rates: An Experimental Study,"
85-21, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
- Bull, Clive & Schotter, Andrew & Weigelt, Keith, 1987. "Tournaments and Piece Rates: An Experimental Study," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(1), pages 1-33, February.
- Ivan Fernandez-Val, 2007.
"Fixed Effects Estimation of Structural Parameters and Marginal Effects in Panel Probit Models,"
Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series
WP2007-009, Boston University - Department of Economics.
- Fernández-Val, Iván, 2009. "Fixed effects estimation of structural parameters and marginal effects in panel probit models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 150(1), pages 71-85, May.
- Lazear, Edward P & Rosen, Sherwin, 1981.
"Rank-Order Tournaments as Optimum Labor Contracts,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(5), pages 841-864, October.
- Gilbert, Richard J & Newbery, David M G, 1982. "Preemptive Patenting and the Persistence of Monopoly," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(3), pages 514-526, June.
- Luís M. B. Cabral, 2003. "R&D Competition when firms Choose Variance," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(1), pages 139-150, 03.
- Ehrenberg, Ronald G & Bognanno, Michael L, 1990.
"Do Tournaments Have Incentive Effects?,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(6), pages 1307-1324, December.
- Michael T. Rauh & Giulio Seccia, 2005.
"Anxiety and Performance: An Endogenous Learning-by-doing Model,"
2005-01, Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, Department of Business Economics and Public Policy.
- Michael T. Rauh & Giulio Seccia, 2006. "Anxiety And Performance: An Endogenous Learning-By-Doing Model," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 47(2), pages 583-609, 05.
- Ignacio Palacios-Huerta, 2003.
"Professionals Play Minimax,"
Review of Economic Studies,
Oxford University Press, vol. 70(2), pages 395-415.
- John List & David Reiley, 2008.
Artefactual Field Experiments
00091, The Field Experiments Website.
- Cabral, Luis M. B., 2002.
"Increasing Dominance with No Efficiency Effect,"
Journal of Economic Theory,
Elsevier, vol. 102(2), pages 471-479, February.
- Luis Cabral, 2000. "Increasing Dominance With No Efficiency Effect," Working Papers 00-06, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics.
- Cabral, L., 2000. "Increasing Dominance with No Efficiency Effect," New York University, Leonard N. Stern School Finance Department Working Paper Seires 00-06, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business-.
- Andrew Caplin & John Leahy, 2001. "Psychological Expected Utility Theory and Anticipatory Feelings," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(1), pages 55-79.
- Bo E. Honore & Arthur Lewbel, 1998.
"Semiparametric Binary Choice Panel Data Models without Strictly Exogeneous Regressors,"
Boston College Working Papers in Economics
455, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 22 Sep 2001.
- Bo E. Honore & Arthur Lewbel, 2002. "Semiparametric Binary Choice Panel Data Models Without Strictly Exogeneous Regressors," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(5), pages 2053-2063, September.
- Arellano, Manuel & Bover, Olympia, 1995.
"Another look at the instrumental variable estimation of error-components models,"
Journal of Econometrics,
Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 29-51, July.
- M Arellano & O Bover, 1990. "Another Look at the Instrumental Variable Estimation of Error-Components Models," CEP Discussion Papers dp0007, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
- Stefano DellaVigna, 2009.
"Psychology and Economics: Evidence from the Field,"
Journal of Economic Literature,
American Economic Association, vol. 47(2), pages 315-372, June.
- Sherwin Rosen, 1985.
"Prizes and Incentives in Elimination Tournaments,"
NBER Working Papers
1668, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Hvide, Hans K. & Kristiansen, Eirik G., 2003.
"Risk taking in selection contests,"
Games and Economic Behavior,
Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 172-179, January.
- Juan D. Carrillo, 2007. "Penalty Shoot-Outs," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 8(5), pages 505-518, October.
- Che, Yeon-Koo & Hendershott, Terrence, 2008.
"How to divide the possession of a football?,"
Elsevier, vol. 99(3), pages 561-565, June.
- Luis M.B. Cabral & Michael Riordan, 1992.
"The Learning Curve, Market Dominance and Predatory Pricing,"
0039, Boston University - Industry Studies Programme.
- Cabral, Luis M B & Riordan, Michael H, 1994. "The Learning Curve, Market Dominance, and Predatory Pricing," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(5), pages 1115-1140, September.
- Cabral, L. & Riordan, M., 1992. "The Learning Curve, Market Dominance and Predatory Pricing," Papers 39, Boston University - Industry Studies Programme.
- Loewenstein, George, 1987. "Anticipation and the Valuation of Delayed Consumption," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 97(387), pages 666-684, September.
- Canice Prendergast, 1999. "The Provision of Incentives in Firms," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(1), pages 7-63, March.
- Jerry R. Green & Nancy L. Stokey, 1982.
"A Comparison of Tournaments and Contracts,"
NBER Working Papers
0840, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Bo E. Honoré & Ekaterini Kyriazidou, 2000. "Panel Data Discrete Choice Models with Lagged Dependent Variables," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(4), pages 839-874, July.
- V. Bhaskar, 2009. "Rational Adversaries? Evidence from Randomised Trials in One Day Cricket," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(534), pages 1-23, 01.
This item is featured on the following reading lists or Wikipedia pages:
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:1116. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.