»ESI Lecture Series, sponsored by IFREE
+-2015-2016 Lecture Guests
Abstract: This paper uses data from an attendance award program implemented at one of five industrial laundry plants to show the complex costs of corporate awards previously ignored in the literature. We show that although the attendance award had direct, positive effects on employees who had previously had punctuality problems, it also led to strategic gaming behavior centered on the specific eligibility criteria for the award. The award program temporarily changed behavior in award-eligible workers, but did not habituate improved attendance. Furthermore, we show that the extrinsic reward from the award program crowded out the internal motivation of those employees who had previously demonstrated excellent attendance, generating worse punctuality during periods of ineligibility. Most novelly, we show that the attendance award program also crowded out internal motivation and performance in tasks not included in the award program. Workers with above average pre-program attendance lost 8% efficiency in daily laundry tasks after the program’s introduction. Our paper suggests that even purely symbolic awards can generate gaming and crowding out costs that may spill over to other important tasks.
Bio: Ian Larkin is an Assistant Professor in the Strategy group at the UCLA Anderson School of Management. He researches the optimal use of formal rewards systems by companies, given the complex and often unanticipated effects these systems have on employee motivation and decision making. His research quantifying the cost incurred by a major enterprise software vendor due to salespeople deliberately gaming their sales commission system, published in The Journal of Labor Economics, is one of the most prominently cited empirical studies of incentive system gaming. It was the basis for a case study widely used in MBA classes on compensation and human resource management.
October 30, 2015, Roberto Weber, Ph.D. - The Spillover Effect of Institutions on Cooperative Norms, Preferences, and Beliefs
Abstract: Institutions are an important means for fostering prosocial behaviors. For example, sanctioning institutions have been shown to be effective for supporting high levels of cooperation in social dilemmas. Moreover, institutions may directly shape individuals' preferences and beliefs. In many contexts, however, institutions are limited in scope and can govern prosocial behavior only in some domains. In other domains, society must rely on voluntary prosocial behavior of individuals. We use a laboratory experiment to study how the presence and nature of an institution that enforces prosocial behavior in one domain affect the behavior in other domains, beyond the reach of the institution. In addition, we study if and how the presence of an institution alters prosocial preferences and beliefs about others' behavior. Groups play two identical public good games, with one game potentially governed by an institution enforcing cooperation. We vary whether the institution is absent, imposed exogenously, or arises endogenously through voting by group members. We find that the presence of an institution in one game generally enhances cooperation in the other game. However, cooperation boosted by an exogenously imposed institution nevertheless decays over time, while the endogenously determined institution leads to stable spillover effects on voluntary cooperation levels. We also note that the presence of an institution strengthens beliefs about others' prosocial behavior and enhances prosocial preferences even towards strangers.
Bio: Roberto Weber has been Professor of Economics and Head of the Chair of Behavioural Economics at the University of Zurich since 2011. Previously, he was Assistant, Associate and Full Professor of Social and Decision Sciences and Economics at Carnegie Mellon University.
Roberto Weber has published research in the leading journals in economics, management, political science and psychology. He also serves on the editorial boards of leading international research journals, including The Journal of the European Economic Association, Management Science, Organization Science and Experimental Economics. He is an invited member of prestigious international research organizations, including a Fellow of the CESifo Research Network and a Fellow of the Strategy Research initiative. Roberto Weber graduated from Texas A&M University in 1994, with a B.A. in Economics, and from The California Institute of Technology in 2000, with a Ph.D. in Social Science.
November 13, 2015, Roman Sheremeta, Ph.D. - Status and the Demand for Visible Goods: Experimental Evidence on Conspicuous Consumption
More information forthcoming.
Sept. 25, 2015, Adam Sanjurjo, Ph.D. - Surprised by the Gambler´s and Hot Hand Fallacies? A Truth in the Law of Small Numbers
Mar. 20, 2015, John Horton, Ph.D. - Price Floors and Employer Preferences: Evidence from a Minimum Wage Experiment
May 12, 2014, Don Ross, Ph.D - Psychological versus economic models of bounded rationality - Watch lecture
Dec. 06, 2013, Jack Stecher, Ph.D. -Description and Experience Based Decision Making: An Experimental and Structural Estimation Approach to the Decision-Experience Gap
Feb. 22, 2013 Jordi Brandts Bernad, Ph.D. - Let’s talk: How communication affects contract design.
Nov. 9, 2012 Uri Gneezy, Ph.D. - Incentives and Behavior Change
Sept. 28, 2012 Charles Thomas, Ph.D. - An Alternating-Offers Model of Multilateral Negotiations - Watch lecture
Aug. 31, 2012 Yan Chen, Ph.D. - Crowdsourcing with All-pay Auctions: a Field Experiment on Taskcn - Watch lecture
Apr. 20, 2012 Shawn Kantor, Ph.D. - Do Research Universities Generate Local Economic Growth? - Watch lecture
Feb. 24, 2012 John Tooby, Ph.D. - The Welfare Tradeoff Architecture, Cooperation, and Social Emotions - For further reading please see: Formidability and the logic of human anger and The architecture of human kin detection. - Watch lecture
Nov. 11, 2011 Mark M. Bykowsky, Ph.D. - A Market-based Approach to Establishing Licensing Rules: Licensed Versus Unlicensed Use of Spectrum Federal Communications Commission - please watch this video before lecture - Watch lecture
Oct. 21, 2011 Parker Ballinger, Ph.D. - Individual versus Social Learning: The Importance of Demonstrability - Watch lecture
Apr. 8, 2011 Kevin McCabe, Ph.D. – Experiments on the role of third parties on redistribution decisions. For further reading please see: Shared Experience and Third-Party Decisions: A Laboratory Result, Legitimacy in the lab – The separate and joint effects of earned roles and earned endowments in third-party redistribution, Whose money is it anyway? Ingroups and distributive behavior. - Watch lecture
Apr. 1, 2011 Michael Gurven, Ph.D. - Experimental investigation of fairness and altruism norms in small-scale societies - Further reading: Culture sometimes matters: Intra-cultural variation in pro-social behavior among Tsimane Amerindians and Collective Action in Action: Prosocial Behavior in and out of the Laboratory - Watch lecture
Feb. 18, 2011 Catherine Eckel, Ph.D. - Giving to Government: Voluntary Taxation in the Lab - Watch lecture
Feb. 4, 2011 Peter Boettke, Ph.D. - Polycentrism and Gargantua: Which Model Best Provides Public Education? - Watch lecture
Oct. 5, 2010 Andreas Wilke, Ph.D. - Past and Present Environments: The Evolution of Decision Making
May 7, 2010 Jim Gentle, Ph.D. - The Contribution of Jumps to the Volatility of Asset Prices - Watch lecture
Apr. 9, 2010 Gregory Waymire, Ph.D. - Can Trust Be Sustained in an Uncertain World When Individuals Have Machiavellian Intelligence? - Watch lecture
Feb. 5, 2010 Kevin McCabe, Ph.D. - Watch lecture
Dec. 2, 2009 Jeffrey Tollaksen, Ph.D. - New Ideas About the Nature of Time - Watch lecture
Nov. 13, 2009 Sarah F. Brosnan, Ph.D. - An Evolutionary Perspective on the Perception and Utilization of Property . Watch lecture
Oct. 9, 2009 Monica Smith, Ph.D. - A cognitive History of Material Objects: The Archaeology of Possession, Inheritance, and Value . Watch lecture
May 20, 2009 Gerd Gigerenzer Ph.D. - Homo Heuristicus: Why Biased Minds Make Better Inferences. Watch lecture
Mar. 20, 2009 John Ledyard Ph.D. – Individual Evolutionary Learning, Other-regarding Preferences, and the Voluntary Contributions Mechanism. Watch lecture
Nov. 7, 2008 Larry Iannaccone Ph.D. - Looking Backward: A Cross-National Study of Religious Trends. Watch lecture
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