On Friday, April 1, 2016, Dr. Pamela Matthews, dean of the College of Liberal Arts, visited the TAMU experimental economics group (including the Behavioral Economics and Policy Program, BEPP, and the Economic Research Laboratory, ERL). This was her first meeting with the experimental economics group.
Dean Matthews met with faculty, graduate students, undergraduate students, and student workers. Discussion included what projects the group was working on as well as future goals. Dean Matthews also had the opportunity to tour the facilities and participate in an ERL experiment.
Wei Zhan, a fourth-year experimental economics PhD student, has won the 2016 Fasken Teaching Award. The annual award is given to one doctoral student who demonstrates excellence in teaching and has a strong portfolio.
From March 12 – 13, 2016, members of the TAMU experimental economics group presented at and attended the 2016 TExAS Conference at Rice University in Houston, TX.
Presenters this year included:
- Alex Brown: “Separated Decisions”
- Daniel Stephenson (5th year PhD student): “Coordination and Evolutionary Dynamics in Attacker-Defender Games”
- Wei Zhan (4th year PhD student): “Playing Both Roles in Dictator Games”
- Ada Kovaliukaite (3rd year PhD student): “Does an Individual Have Diverse Beliefs? Eliciting Subjects’ Predictions of How a Population Plays” (poster)
- Billur Aksoy (3rd year PhD student): “Measuring Trust: A Reinvestigation” (poster)
In addition to the presenters, a number of other PhD students and TAMU faculty members also attended.
The TExAS Conference was founded in 2014 by Dr. Brown, director of the ERL, as a way for experimentalists in Texas to collaborate with and learn from each other.
From January 5 – 9, 2016, the 21st Visiting Graduate Student Workshop in Experimental Economics was held at Chapman University. Sponsored by IFREE since 1997, the purpose of this workshop is to provide an introduction to laboratory methods in economics for PhD students.
Billur Aksoy and Mackenzie Alston, students of the PhD Program at Texas A&M, Department of Economics, participated in this workshop and interacted with Dr. Vernon Smith.
Daniel Fragiadakis and Daniel Stephenson traveled to Austin, Texas, to present research at the fourth Texas Economic Theory Camp held at the University of Texas at Austin from November 14 – 15, 2015. The purpose of the camp is to foster greater interaction among researchers working in pure and applied economic theory in Texas as well as to provide a forum for scholars to present their current research.
Daniel Stephenson presented his paper “Coordination and Evolutionary Stability in Attacker- Defender Games.” This study investigates the empirical validity of dynamic evolutionary models in continuous-time laboratory experiments with attacker-defender games.
This research studied two treatments: control and coordinated. Consistent with the theory, behavior is tightly clustered around the equilibrium in the control treatment. In the coordinated treatment, however, there are large cyclical deviations from the Nash Equilibrium. These results suggest that coordination incentives can lead to more predictable attacks in attacker-defender games.
Faculty and PhD students of Texas A&M’s Department of Economics presented their research at the Economics Science Association (ESA) North American meeting in Dallas, Texas. The conference draws some of the most important researchers in economic science. This year’s plenary speaker was Iris Bohnet.
The presenters and research topics during the conference were (in session order):
- Daniel Stephenson, “Coordination and Evolutionary Stability in Continuous-Time Attacker Defender Games”
- Ada Kovaliukaite, “Does an Individual Have Diverse Beliefs? An Experimental Investigation”
- Alexander Brown, “Institutional Rules and Oil Field Unitization”
- Billur Aksoy, “Measuring Trust: A Reinvestigation”
- Zoey Zhengzheng Wang, “Group Size and the Effectiveness of Punishment in Public Goods Games”
- Daniel Fragiadakis, ”A Cross-Game Analysis of Behavioral Game Theory Types”
- Noah Bacine, “An Investigation of Feedback: When it’s enough and when it’s too much”
- Haley Harwell, “Did the Ice Bucket Challenge Drain the Philanthropic Reservoir?: An Investigation Using A Real-Donation Lab Experiment”
On Thursday, October 22, 2015, a workshop was held in honor of Dr. John Van Huyck at Southern Methodist University (SMU) in Dallas, TX. Dr. Van Huyck passed away in 2014.
More than 60 people from all over the country were in attendance. Larry Samuelson of Yale University delivered the plenary address on “The State of Game Theory.” The program consisted of 12 papers and the presenters included many of Dr. Van Huyck’s friends, colleagues, and students. Two of the papers listed Dr. Van Huyck as a coauthor.
The conference was organized by Catherine Eckel of Texas A&M University and Yan Chen of the University of Michigan. They extend a special thank you to Mr. Al Van Huyck, the father of Dr. Van Huyck, for sponsoring the event. Thanks also to the 12 presenters and to Tim Salmon of SMU for his assistance.
The program is here
For more details on Dr. Van Huyck, please click here.
Faculty and PhD students of the Department of Economics presented their research at the Economics Science Association (ESA) North American meeting in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The conference gathers some of the most important personalities and researchers of the Economic Science. This year the keynote speakers were John Kagel (Ohio State) and Rebecca Morton (NYU), both former faculty at Texas A&M University.
This year’s program included a special ceremony in memory of John Van Huyck, former faculty of our department, who died on September 11, 2014. The ceremony showed the great appreciation and respect for John, both as a researcher of great intellectual stature and as a great colleague in the discipline. Catherine Eckel, Alex Brown and Ajalavat Viriyavipart (grad student) offered their personal memories of John, while David Cooper (FSU); friend, colleague and coauthor, put in perspective John’s great contributions to the discipline of Experimental and Behavioral Economics.
The presenters and research topics during the conference were the following (in session order):
- Ajalavat Viriyavipart, “Equilibrium Selection in Global Entry Games with Strategic Substitutes and Complements.”
- Catherine Eckel, “Inconsistency Pays.”
- Zhengzheng Wang, “An Experimental Analysis of the Non-constant-sum Colonel Blotto Game.”
- Daniel Stephenson, “Evolutionary Preference Revelation Dynamics under School Choice Mechanisms.”
- Haley Harwell, “When does Punishment Enhance Cooperation?”
- José Gabriel Castillo, “Four Classic Public Goods Experiments: A replication study.”
- Alexander Brown, “Exploding Offers with Experimental Consumer Goods.”
The Economic Research Laboratory is deeply saddened to report the passing of a founder and current co-director of the ERL, Dr. John Van Huyck. John’s experimental research on coordination, performed at A&M, permanently altered how economists thought about game theory as well as how future game theory experiments were designed. He will be sorely missed. For more details about his life, click here and his research, click here
Several members of the ERL team, including Catherine Eckel, Haley Harwell, and Daniel Stephenson attended the conference and presented new experimental research. Topics included labor markets, field experiments, market design, and social norms at the 2014 European Economic Science Association Meetings in Prague, Czech Republic.