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Bridges CAGE Summer School 2019

Below are the abstracts for the sessions.

Recent developments in the field of social norms by Pavitra Govindan

Economists have recently gotten interested in social norms and their potential role in policy-making. This recent interest has led to the development of innovative ways to measure norms and to study their impact on behavior. In this workshop, you will learn about the different definitions of social norms including prescriptive norms, descriptive norms and social conventions. You will learn how these norms are measured in the lab and in the field. You will be exposed to recent behavioral economics literature that has (1) incorporated social norms in preference models, (2) estimated these models using experimental data, and (3) explored norm-based interventions in the field to initiate behavioral change.

An Introduction to the Diffusion Decision Model for Modelling Binary Responses and Associated Response Times by Henrik Singmann

This session consists of two parts. The first part will be a lecture introducing the goal of cognitive modelling in the behavioural sciences. Then I will introduce the diffusion model as one of the most prominent model which allows to describe binary decisions and the associated response time distribution. The second part will provide some hands-on experience in fitting the diffusion model using R.

Human Wellbeing: Some New Ideas by Redzo Mujcic

This session will cover the topic of human wellbeing or happiness. Using an interdisciplinary approach, it will focus on new ideas and research findings on the causes and consequences of improved wellbeing. The session will draw on empirical evidence from both the social and hard sciences. How public policymakers and private citizens can use such findings to regulate and improve overall happiness levels will also be discussed.

How biases and beliefs shape financial decision-making by Theresa Kuchler

The first part of the lecture will focus on expectations in household finance. After a brief overview of the topic, we will explore how individuals form their expectations and how expectations affect actions, focusing on the following three papers:
Kuchler, Zafar (2019): Personal Experiences and Expectations about Aggregate Outcomes
Bailey, Cao, Kuchler, Stroebel (2018): The Economic Effects of Social Networks: Evidence from the Housing Market
Bailey, Davila, Kuchler, Stroebel (forthcoming): House Price Beliefs and Mortgage Leverage Choice
The last two papers study how individuals' network affects their expectations. We will pick up this topic in the second half of the lecture, focusing on the geography of social networks, focusing on the following papers and the publicly available data:
Bailey, Cao, Kuchler, Stroebel, Wong (2018): Social Connectedness: Measurement, Determinants and Effects
Bailey, Farrell, Kuchler, Stroebel (2019): Social Connectedness in Urban Areas

Dishonesty: an introduction by Despoina Alempaki

Private information is at the heart of many economic activities. Until recently, the standard assumption in economics was that individuals would always lie whenever there was a material benefit of doing so. Recent work in behavioral economics and psychology has challenged this assumption. This lecture will provide an overview of the literature on dishonesty in the field of behavioral economics examining (1) experimental paradigms that measure individuals’ aversion to lying, (2) factors that influence lying, and (3) theoretical developments on the structure of lying costs.