Skip to main content

STICERD Economic Theory Seminars

Misinterpreting Social Outcomes and Information Campaigns

Aislinn Bohren (University of Pennsylvania), joint with Daniel N. Hauser

Thursday 14 May 2020 15:30 - 17:00

Due to the onging coronavirus outbreak, many of our seminars and public events this year will continue as online seminars. Please check our website listings and Twitter feed @STICERD_LSE for updates.

About this event

This paper explores learning in a setting with social perception biases. Individuals learn from others’ outcomes but have a misspecified model of their preferences. When individuals systematically overestimate the similarity between their own preferences and the preferences of others - exhibiting the false consensus effect - this can lead to incorrect learning, while when individuals systematically underestimate this similarity - exhibiting pluralistic ignorance -- this can prevent beliefs from converging. We explore how information campaigns - releasing (costly) information about the state - can counteract these inefficient choices. We show that the duration - temporary or permanent - and the target - correct inefficient action choices or reinforce efficient action choices - of the optimal information campaign depend crucially on the form of misspecification.

Economic Theory Seminars are held on Thursdays in term time at 15:30-17:00, ONLINE, unless specified otherwise.

Seminar organisers: Dr Andrew Ellis and Dr Francesco Nava.

For further information please contact Annie-Rose Nicholas by email:

Please use this link to subscribe or unsubscribe to the Economic Theory seminars mailing list (etheory).