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Record: oai:ARNO:424690

AuthorT. Buser
TitleEssays in behavioural economics
PromotorsH. Oosterbeek, E. Plug
Date4-9-2012
PublisherThela Thesis
PlaceAmsterdam
Year2012
Pages111
ISBN978 90 361 0312 1
FacultyFaculty of Economics and Business
Institute/dept.FEB: Amsterdam School of Economics Research Institute (ASE-RI)
Keywordsbehavioural economics; experimental economics; neuroeconomics; endocrinological economics; gender; testosterone; progesterone; handedness; educational choice; trust; altruism; reciprocity
AbstractMost of the economic literature takes preferences as given. Economists use them as the building blocks of their models, estimate them in lab experiments and correlate them with life outcomes. But we only rarely ask about their origins. How come that fundamental preferences such as risk aversion, reciprocity, inequality aversion and altruism vary so strongly across individuals? Are they biologically predetermined or can we shape them through upbringing and education?
This dissertation aims to take a step towards answering these questions. Chapter two investigates whether the willingness to compete in a tournament varies over the menstrual cycle and with the intake of hormonal contraceptives. Chapters three and four correlate choices in social preference games with physical markers for underlying neural differences. Chapter five deals with the consequences rather than the origins of individual differences in economic preferences and investigates whether gender differences in academic career choices can be explained by gender differences in the willingness to compete.
LanguageEnglish
NoteTinbergen Institute research series no. 538
Document typeDissertation
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