Economics - Research Publications

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    Racial bias in newspaper ratings of professional football players
    Principe, F ; van Ours, JC (ELSEVIER, 2021-12-13)
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    Is it a fallacy to believe in the hot hand in the NBA three-point contest?
    Miller, JB ; Sanjurjo, A (Elsevier BV, 2021-09-01)
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    Behavioral Constraints on the Design of Subgame-Perfect Implementation Mechanisms
    Fehr, E ; Powell, M ; Wilkening, T (AMER ECONOMIC ASSOC, 2021-04-01)
    We study subgame-perfect implementation (SPI) mechanisms that have been proposed as a solution to incomplete contracting problems. We show that these mechanisms, which are based on off-equilibrium arbitration clauses that impose large fines for lying and the inappropriate use of arbitration, have severe behavioral constraints because the fines induce retaliation against legitimate uses of arbitration. Incorporating reciprocity preferences into the theory explains the observed behavioral patterns and helps us develop a new mechanism that is more robust and achieves high rates of truth-telling and efficiency. Our results highlight the importance of tailoring implementation mechanisms to the underlying behavioral environment. (JEL C92, D44, D82, D86, D91)
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    Labor market policies during an epidemic
    Birinci, S ; Karahan, F ; Mercan, Y ; See, K (Elsevier, 2021-02-01)
    We study the positive and normative implications of labor market policies that counteract the economic fallout from containment measures during an epidemic. We incorporate a standard epidemiological model into an equilibrium search model of the labor market to compare unemployment insurance (UI) expansions and payroll subsidies. In isolation, payroll subsidies that preserve match capital and enable a swift economic recovery are preferred over a cost-equivalent UI expansion. When considered jointly, however, a cost-equivalent optimal mix allocates 20 percent of the budget to payroll subsidies and 80 percent to UI. The two policies are complementary, catering to different rungs of the productivity ladder. The small share of payroll subsidies is sufficient to preserve high-productivity jobs, but it leaves room for social assistance to workers who face inevitable job loss.
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    Mental health effects of same-sex marriage legalization
    Chen, S ; van Ours, JC (WILEY, 2021-10-09)
    Same-sex marriage legalization (SSML) is a typical anti-discrimination policy to remove institutional discrimination against sexual minorities by providing them with marriage equality. We examine how this legalization in the Netherlands affected mental health. Conducting a difference-in-differences analysis with heterosexual individuals as a reference group, we find that SSML significantly improved mental health of sexual minorities and substantially reduced the sexual orientation gap of mental health. The beneficial effects were present for both married and non-married sexual minorities. This phenomenon suggests that part of the health gains were related to mechanisms beyond marriage itself.
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    How sensitive are sports fans to unemployment?
    Reade, JJ ; Van Ours, JC (ROUTLEDGE JOURNALS, TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD, 2021-10-07)
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    Adaptation to Climate Change by Australian Farmers
    Freebairn, J (MDPI, 2021-09-01)
    Climate change in the form of higher temperatures, changes of rainfall patterns, and for some, more natural disasters will reduce the returns from current farming choices on what to produce and the production methods. Variation of climate change across regions and uncertainty about the magnitudes of change call for a diverse mix of adaptations to climate change across different regions and individual farms. This paper considers the institutional structure for effective climate change adaptation by Australian farms. It is argued that a rerun of the history of successful adaptation of farms to new technology, changes in output and input prices, natural climate variation, and other circumstances can be repeated for climate change adaptation. Individual farms can benefit from incentives and rewards to revise their decisions, which will combine with better individual outcomes. Complementary support by the government includes the provision of climate change and weather forecast information, support for research into new technology, help to evaluate the pros and cons of alternative choices, and provision of a social safety net for those unable to adapt.
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    By chance or by choice? Biased attribution of others' outcomes when social preferences matter
    Erkal, N ; Gangadharan, L ; Koh, BH (SPRINGER, 2021-09-28)
    Decision makers in positions of power often make unobserved choices under risk and uncertainty. In many cases, they face a trade-off between maximizing their own payoff and those of other individuals. What inferences are made in such instances about their choices when only outcomes are observable? We conduct two experiments that investigate whether outcomes are attributed to luck or choices. Decision makers choose between two investment options, where the more costly option has a higher chance of delivering a good outcome (that is, a higher payoff) for the group. We show that attribution biases exist in the evaluation of good outcomes. On average, good outcomes of decision makers are attributed more to luck as compared to bad outcomes. This asymmetry implies that decision makers get too little credit for their successes. The biases are exhibited by those individuals who make or would make the less prosocial choice for the group as decision makers, suggesting that a consensus effect may be shaping both the belief formation and updating processes. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The online version contains supplementary material available at 10.1007/s10683-021-09731-w.
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    Impacts of graduated driver licensing regulations
    Hirschberg, J ; Lye, J (Elsevier, 2020-05-01)
    We evaluate the impact of the Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) system introduced in Victoria, Australia as they influence both injury and fatality rates. Since 1990, the Victorian GDL scheme has undergone several modifications including the introduction of new requirements and the stricter enforcement of existing regulations. Our evaluation of the GDL is based on monthly mortality and morbidity data for drivers 18–25 for the period January 2000 to June 2017. We estimate the immediate and long-term impacts of each policy change to the GDL system. Our results indicate that several initiatives in the GDL system have had impacts on both fatalities and injuries requiring hospitalisation when differentiated by gender. In a number of cases we observe that reactions to these measures are common to both genders. These include: the signalling of the proposed GDL changes in the media, the introduction of an extra probationary year for those under 21, the total alcohol ban for the entire probationary period, and limits on peer passengers for the first year. Stricter mobile phone restrictions appear to have had no impact on injuries for either males or females although they were associated with lower fatality rates for both. In addition, we found an indication that in the period prior to the introduction of the mandatory requirement of 120 h supervised driving, there was a rise in male driver injuries possibly caused by a rush of more inexperienced learners to obtain their probationary licence.