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Economics PhD student wins Best Paper award in Industrial Economics

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Economics PhD student wins Best Paper award in Industrial Economics

Warwick Economics PhD student, Adam Di Liza, has received the Best Paper prize of the Business and Industry Section of the Royal Statistical Society awarded at the PhD Symposium 2024 in Industrial Economics.

Adam's paper, Social Influence in Online Reviews: Evidence from the Steam Store, discusses his research on how the reviews left by users might influence the reviews others leave. Using a policy change on the Steam gaming platform the paper shows that when users are exposed to the reviews of others, they are more likely to leave a negative review if they see a negative review. However, this does not happen when users see a positive review. This negativity bias increases the gap between lower rated and higher rated games. Other key findings of this research point out that less experienced users are influenced by the reviews of others much more, and policies that correct this negative bias increase the sales of products on the platform.

Adam, who is a first year PhD student of Economics at Warwick, was awarded the Best Paper prize of the Business and Industrial Section of the Royal Statistical Society for the best contribution to the use and advancement of statistical-econometric methods and/or data collection to the analysis of industrial economic issues.

Adam's prize was announced at the PhD Symposium in Industrial Economics, as part of a two-day research conference of the Network of Industrial Economists (NIE) on Innovation and Competition in Digital Platforms held at the University of Warwick on 27-28 June 2024. The symposium brings together early career economists (PhD students and postdoctoral researchers) to foster discussion and dissemination of research in all areas of industrial economics and to provide them with feedback on their work from a designated discussant drawn from both internal and external faculty.

Commented on the award, Adam said:

“It's great that so many people found my research interesting. Understanding the specifics of online review generation is hopefully useful for platforms, but also us as consumers. Not only did I get really good feedback, but I got to discuss this in detail with my fellow presenters throughout the day. Both my supervisors, Professor Mirko Draca and Dr Ao Wang, have been of immense help as I wrote this up over the last few months and I definitely couldn't have done this without them.”

We congratulate Adam on this achievement and wish him further successes in the future.

Related information

Adam Di Liza is a first year PhD student in the Department of Economics at the University of Warwick. Further information about his research and publications can be found on his PhD student Profile – Adam Di Liza.

The Network of Industrial Economists

Established in 1970, the Network of Industrial Economists (NIE) is a forum for interchange among university economists in the UK, and for interaction between academia, business, and government on topics of industry economics.

NIE Conference and PhD Symposium 2024, 27-28 June 2024, University of Warwick

Royal Statistical Society

Founded in 1834, the Royal Statistical Society is one of the world’s leading organisations advocating for the importance of statistics and data. It’s a professional body for all statisticians and data analysts with more than 10,000 members in the UK and across the world.