Published and Forthcoming Papers
Employing an incentivized controlled lab experiment, we investigate the effects of ovulatory shift on salient behavioral outcomes related to (i) risk preferences, (ii) rule violation, and (iii) exploratory attitude. As evolutionary psychology suggests, these outcomes may play an important role in economic decision-making and represent behavioral aspects that may systematically vary over the menstrual cycle to increase the reproductive success. Exploiting a within-subjects design, 124 naturally cycling females participated in experimental sessions during their ovulation and menstruation, the phases between which the difference in the investigated behavior should be the largest. In each session, hormonal samples for cortisol, estradiol, and testosterone were collected. The group of women was also contrasted against an auxiliary reference group composed of 47 males, who are not subject to hormonal variations of this nature. Our results reveal no systematic behavioral differences between the ovulation and menstruation phases.
Coordinating Donations via an Intermediary: The Destructive Effect of A Sunk Overhead Cost with Diya Abraham, Luca Corazzini, and Tommaso Reggiani in Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 2023 (MUNI ECO Working Paper, 2021-14)
Donors often use the services of an intermediary to prevent their donations from being too thinly distributed over multiple public projects. We explore whether donors' willingness to coordinate their funds via an intermediary depends on the extent of the intermediary's discretion over their contributions, as well as the organizational overhead costs incurred by the intermediary. We investigate this using a laboratory experiment in which donors face multiple identical threshold public goods and the opportunity to coordinate their contributions via another donor assigned to the role of intermediary. In line with standard game theoretic predictions, we find that donors make use of the intermediary only when they know she is heavily restricted in terms of the proportion of their contributions she can expropriate for herself. However, we find strong evidence that the positive effect of these restrictions is undone once the intermediary incurs a sunk overhead cost. Our analysis suggests that the ex-ante inequality created as a result of this sunk cost reduces the trustworthiness of the intermediary in the donors' eyes, which in turn reduces the donors' willingness to use the intermediary to coordinate their contributions effectively.
We study the impact of the media negativity bias on tax compliance. Through a framed laboratory experiment, we assess how the exposure to biased news about government action affects compliance in a repeated taxation game. Subjects treated with positive news are signicantly more compliant than the control group. Instead, the exposure to negative news does not prompt any significant reaction compared to the neutral condition, suggesting that participants may perceive the media negativity bias in the selection and tonality of news as the norm rather than the exception. Overall, our results suggest that biased news provision is a constant source of psychological priming and plays a vital role in taxpayers' compliance decisions.
There has been an increasing interest in altruistic behaviour in the domain of losses recently. Nevertheless, there is no consensus in whether the monetary losses make individuals more generous or more selfish. Although almost all relevant studies rely on a dictator game to study altruistic behaviour, the experimental designs of these studies differ in how the losses are framed, which may explain the diverging findings. Utilizing a dictator game, this paper studies the impact of loss framing on altruism. The main methodological result is that the dictators’ prosocial behaviour is sensitive to the loss frame they are embedded in. More specifically, in a dictator game in which the dictators have to share a loss between themselves and a recipient, the monetary allocations of the dictators are more benevolent than in a standard setting without a loss and in a dictator game in which the dictators have to share what remains of their endowments after a loss. These differences are explained by the different social norms that the respective loss frames invoke.
A Competitive Audit Selection Mechanism with Incomplete Information with Ondřej Krčál, Rostislav Staněk, Jiří Špalek, and James Tremewan. MUNI ECON Working Papers 2019-08. Under review in Economic Inquiry.