“Loss Attitudes in the U.S. Population: Evidence from Dynamically Optimized Sequential Experimentation (DOSE),” Erik Snowberg, University of British Columbia
BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES WORKSHOP
Abstract: To measure individual-level loss aversion in a representative sample of the U.S. population (N = 2;000), we introduce DOSE – Dynamically Optimized Sequential Experimentation. We find that around 50% of the U.S. population is loss tolerant. This is counter to earlier findings, which mostly come from lab/student samples, that a strong majority of participants are loss averse. Loss attitudes are correlated with cognitive ability: loss aversion is more prevalent in people with high cognitive ability, and loss tolerance is more common in those with low cognitive ability. We also use DOSE to document facts about risk and time preferences, and demonstrate that DOSE elicitations are more accurate, more stable across time, and faster to administer than standard methods.
Renowned economist Erik Snowberg is the Canada Excellence Research Chair in Data-Intensive Methods in Economics at the Vancouver School of Economics at the University of British Columbia. Dr. Snowberg is leading a cutting-edge, cross-disciplinary research program aimed at linking disparate fields in economics. His goal is to build UBC into a world leader in the empirical study of political economy, mining innovative data to better understand the effects of politics and policy on the economy. His appointment includes the launch of a new Centre for Innovative Data in Economics (CIDE) at UBC. His research has two foci: using social science theory to design better experiments involving people, with applications in medicine and economic development; and combining behavioral economics with political economy to better understand the roots of partisan politics and its effects on policy.
Dr. Snowberg has earned a National Bureau of Economic Research Faculty Research Fellowship, a Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research Dissertation Fellowship, and an Honorable Mention from the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program. He received his PhD in business administration from Stanford University. He holds undergraduate degrees in math and physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Prior to joining UBC, Erik was a professor of economics and political science at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech).
This workshop series is cosponsored by the Center for the Study of American Politics (CSAP) and the School of Management’s International Center for Finance and Whitebox Advisors fund.
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