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Learning in Different Social Contests


  • Marco Novarese

    (Centre for Cognitive Economics)


This paper aims at analysing the effects of learning on the individual behaviour in an experiment that requires cooperation and coordination within teams. Using artificial agents, different social contests are created, as training environments. The results confirm previous findings (on the tendency to repeat the strategies that proved to be successful and to apply them also in other situations) and propose new hypothesis. Learning is not only based on a mechanical repetition of past choices, but also on reflection, imitation and on the attitude to build a model of the world. Besides the paper empirically tests the role of satisfaction in the routinization (this is one of the first empirical attempt of this kind). The training in an unfair and difficult environment leads some individuals to reinforce also strategies that have not been successful, but that involved emotions. Another contest seems not to determine detectable effects.

Suggested Citation

  • Marco Novarese, 2004. "Learning in Different Social Contests," Game Theory and Information 0405008, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpga:0405008
    Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 22. Paper prepared for the Conference 'Cross-Fertilization Between Economics and Psychology', Sabe and Iarep joint meeting, Philadelphia, July, 2004 Session Number F1 “Cognitive Economics 1” A preliminary version of this paper has been presented at the II Conference of the Italian Association for Cognitive Economics, held in Ivrea (To), March, 2004

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Olivier Gossner & Nicolas Melissas, 2006. "Informational Cascades Elicit Private Information ," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 47(1), pages 297-325, February.
    2. Gill, D. & Sgroi, D., 2003. "Product Launches with Biased Reviewers: The Importance of Not Being Earnest," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0334, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    3. Chamley, Christophe, 2004. "Delays and equilibria with large and small information in social learning," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(3), pages 477-501, June.
    4. Farrell, Joseph, 1988. "Communication, coordination and Nash equilibrium," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 209-214.
    5. Bikhchandani, Sushil & Hirshleifer, David & Welch, Ivo, 1992. "A Theory of Fads, Fashion, Custom, and Cultural Change in Informational Cascades," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(5), pages 992-1026, October.
    6. Baliga, Sandeep & Morris, Stephen, 2002. "Co-ordination, Spillovers, and Cheap Talk," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 105(2), pages 450-468, August.
    7. Farrell, Joseph & Gibbons, Robert, 1989. "Cheap talk can matter in bargaining," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 221-237, June.
    8. Zwiebel, Jeffrey, 1995. "Corporate Conservatism and Relative Compensation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(1), pages 1-25, February.
    9. Sgroi, Daniel, 2002. "Optimizing Information in the Herd: Guinea Pigs, Profits, and Welfare," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 137-166, April.
    10. Crawford, Vincent P & Sobel, Joel, 1982. "Strategic Information Transmission," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1431-1451, November.
    11. Joseph Farrell, 1987. "Cheap Talk, Coordination, and Entry," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 18(1), pages 34-39, Spring.
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    More about this item


    Learning; cognitive economics; experimental economics; cooperation; coordination; satisfaction;

    JEL classification:

    • A12 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Other Disciplines
    • C9 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness

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