Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines (STICERD) LSE RSS Contact Us YouTube Twitter

STICERD Psychology and Economics Seminar


feed/rss  Webfeed

These seminars are held on Tuesdays in term time at 17:00-18:30 in room 32L 2.04 (2nd floor, 32 Lincolns Inn Fields, London), unless specified otherwise.

Entry is on a first-come first-served basis. No registration is required but places are limited. 

Seminar Organisers: Professor Erik Eyster and Professor Nava Ashraf

You can subscribe or unsubscribe to our mailing list.

calendar
Tuesday  21 February 2017  17:00 - 18:30

Channeled Attention and Stable Errors

Joshua Schwartzstein (Harvard Business School) , joint with Tristan Gagnon-Bartsch and Matthew Rabin

A frequent critique of recent models of ways people misunderstand the world is that people should figure out their mistakes after observing events they thought were extremely unlikely or impossible. This paper develops a framework to provide guidance in assessing when a particular error is likely to be noticed in a given environment, focusing on two criteria. First, we clarify that the notion of “unlikely” that should induce a person noticing inconsistent data to deem her mistaken theory implausible is unlikeliness relative to a compelling alternative theory. Second, and our primary premise, a person may ignore, disregard, or discard information her mistaken theory leads her to deem irrelevant. We propose solution concepts embedding such “channeled attention” that predict when a particular theory might persist indefinitely when a person encodes and analyzes data if and only if it is perceived as having positive value within that theory. For any erroneous theory, a person can selectively attend to information she deems sufficient without noticing anything she would find impossible. We investigate which combinations of errors and situations tend to provoke incidental learning, providing comparative statics on both preferences and information that make erroneous beliefs stable. The paper applies these principles to study the attentional stability of several common errors and psychological biases. We show, for example, how a person might remain naive about her self-control problems—and why full naivete can be more stable than partial naivete. Additionally, when certain errors lead a person to overvalue advice or listen to the wrong people, rich feedback on the quality of advice can in fact increase the stability of those errors relative to cases where feedback is sparse.


32L 2.04, 2nd Floor Conference Room, LSE, 32 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PH
calendar
Tuesday  07 March 2017  17:00 - 18:30

Bounded Reasoning: Cognition or Rationality?

Terri Kneeland (UCL) , joint with Amanda Friedenberg and Willemien Kets

32L 2.04, 2nd Floor Conference Room, LSE, 32 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PH
calendar
Tuesday  21 March 2017  17:00 - 18:30

Measuring and Bounding Experimenter Demand

Jonathan de Quidt (IIES)

[pdf] Download Paper


32L 2.04, 2nd Floor Conference Room, LSE, 32 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PH