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Game form misconceptions are not necessary for a willingness-to-pay vs. willingness-to-accept gap

Author

Listed:
  • Björn Bartling
  • Florian Engl
  • Roberto A. Weber

Abstract

Cason and Plott (2014) show that subjects’ misconception about the incentive properties of the Becker-DeGroot-Marschak (BDM) value elicitation procedure can generate data patterns that look like - and might thus be misinterpreted as evidence for - preferences constructed from endowments or reference points. We test whether game form misconceptions are necessary to produce willingness-to-pay (WTP) vs. willingness-to-accept (WTA) gaps in a valuation experiment in which subjects are randomly assigned to the role of either buyer or seller. We employ a design that allows us to identify whether a subject understood the incentive properties of a price-list version of the BDM mechanism. We find a robust WTP-WTA gap, even among subjects whose elicited valuations for a good of induced and known monetary value and whose ability to identify the payoffs resulting from their choices indicate an understanding of the incentive properties of the BDM mechanism. We conclude that game form misconceptions are not a necessary condition for the emergence of WTP-WTA gaps.

Suggested Citation

  • Björn Bartling & Florian Engl & Roberto A. Weber, 2014. "Game form misconceptions are not necessary for a willingness-to-pay vs. willingness-to-accept gap," ECON - Working Papers 180, Department of Economics - University of Zurich, revised Apr 2015.
  • Handle: RePEc:zur:econwp:180
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    File URL: http://www.econ.uzh.ch/static/wp/econwp180.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. James Murphy & Thomas Stevens & Lava Yadav, 2010. "A Comparison of Induced Value and Home-Grown Value Experiments to Test for Hypothetical Bias in Contingent Valuation," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 47(1), pages 111-123, September.
    2. Daniel Kahneman & Jack L. Knetsch & Richard H. Thaler, 1991. "Anomalies: The Endowment Effect, Loss Aversion, and Status Quo Bias," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 5(1), pages 193-206, Winter.
    3. Timothy N. Cason & Charles R. Plott, 2014. "Misconceptions and Game Form Recognition: Challenges to Theories of Revealed Preference and Framing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 122(6), pages 1235-1270.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Simone Quercia, 2016. "Eliciting and measuring betrayal aversion using the BDM mechanism," Journal of the Economic Science Association, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 2(1), pages 48-59, May.
    2. Hett, Florian & Kröll, Markus & Mechtel, Mario, 2017. "Choosing Who You Are: The Structure and Behavioral Effects of Revealed Identification Preferences," Annual Conference 2017 (Vienna): Alternative Structures for Money and Banking 168223, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    3. Cubitt, Robin & Gächter, Simon & Quercia, Simone, 2017. "Conditional cooperation and betrayal aversion," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 141(C), pages 110-121.
    4. Drouvelis, Michalis & Sonnemans, Joep, 2017. "The endowment effect in games," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 94(C), pages 240-262.
    5. Bull, Charles & Courty, Pascal & Doyon, Maurice & Rondeau, Daniel, 2019. "Failure of the Becker–DeGroot–Marschak mechanism in inexperienced subjects: New tests of the game form misconception hypothesis," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 159(C), pages 235-253.
    6. Silvia Bou & Jordi Brandts & Magda Cayón & Pablo Guillén, 2016. "The price of luck: paying for the hot hand of others," Journal of the Economic Science Association, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 2(1), pages 60-72, May.
    7. Randolph Sloof & Ferdinand A. Siemens, 2017. "Illusion of control and the pursuit of authority," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 20(3), pages 556-573, September.
    8. Fehr, Dietmar & Hakimov, Rustamdjan & Kübler, Dorothea, 2015. "The willingness to pay–willingness to accept gap: A failed replication of Plott and Zeiler," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 120-128.
    9. Markussen, Thomas & Putterman, Louis & Tyran, Jean-Robert, 2016. "Judicial error and cooperation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 372-388.
    10. Bazzani, Claudia & Nayga, Rodolfo M. Jr. & Caputo, Vincenzina & Canavari, Maurizio & Danforth, Diana M., 2016. "On the Use of the BDM Mechanism in Non-Hypothetical Choice Experiments," 2016 Annual Meeting, July 31-August 2, Boston, Massachusetts 235904, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    11. Cubitt, Robin & Gächter, Simon & Quercia, Simone, 2017. "Conditional cooperation and betrayal aversion," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 141(C), pages 110-121.
    12. Florian Hett & Markus Kröll & Mario Mechtel, 2019. "Choosing Who You Are: The Structure and Behavioral Effects of Revealed Identification Preferences," Working Papers 1903, Gutenberg School of Management and Economics, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz.
    13. Brebner, Sarah & Sonnemans, Joep, 2018. "Does the elicitation method impact the WTA/WTP disparity?," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 73(C), pages 40-45.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    WTP-WTA gap; game from misconception; BDM mechanism; endowment effect; experimental methods; highly replicable laboratory environment;

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles

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