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Paul Reilly
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Piggy backing off of Dan's paper topic, might I appreciate a video game gift less if I know it was on sale just before Christmas and whoever bought it thought they saved money on me?
Toggle Commented Nov 20, 2014 on Econ 398 Papers at Jolly Green General
Again, this is similar to the organ donor opt in vs opt out. Framing plays a huge role in the choices we make as consumers. In my marketing class, Sears had the problem that they continually had to run discounts on various items to get people in the stores. In an effort to stop discounting, they took off the various% off stickers and just reduced the price accordingly. Sales plummeted and they had to bring back those silly stickers and increase the prices. The real price never changed... however there was a perceived deal. And who doesn't want a good deal. When I get a great "deal" on a videogame I know that it cost the company relatively nothing to produce that extra copy on the margin. Maybe I feel that I pulled a "fast one" on the producer or this emotion of satisfaction with my thrifty decision that makes me value the purchase even more than I paid.
Toggle Commented Nov 20, 2014 on Econ 398 Papers at Jolly Green General
The cognitive dissonance between rating the greatest risks to the environment compared with where they actually allocated the funds among the three areas affecting the environmental health is an area that needs to be addressed in order to asses how best to encourage donations towards a cause. Even if people realize that a specific problem has the highest negative impact, it does not correlate with/cause increased donations. This relates back to the beginning of the article which talked about old methods of trying to find specific people and teach them about/engage the public may not be the best approach. The second part of the article that seemed of note was the implication that people often prefer subconscious decision making to unconscious decision making. "Individuals have even indicated they are happier with the decisions they make as a result of the unconscious experimental system." Part of this could be because of the little voice in our heads which automatically tells us no you shouldn't do ... but yet we rationalize away this doubt and end up experiencing the consequences. Or the reverse you want to do something, the voice says no and you feel like you missed out on an opportunity due to self doubt.
Toggle Commented Nov 11, 2014 on Econ 398 for Tuesday at Jolly Green General
Maximizing utility under the consequential theory implies that everyone can evaluate perfectly all options and accurately choose their best outcome. Unfortunately, I can barely figure out how much 20% of the tip at Macadoos is at lunch... Happy Hour is simply a toss up. Is my impartial spectator on the fritz? I question the studies ability to single in on one particular emotion. The process to experience fear could be impeded or amplified by different chemicals in the brain. When looking at a single decision to buy a stock, most people do not decide to purchase a stock in a finite setting. A person may be on the search for somewhere to park their savings for several months. Even with that month worth of research, any asymmetries of information fly in the face of consequentialist theory. Your local plumber might not know that bond prices are inversely related to yield. The emotions of fear, expectations of when you will need the money, etc all impact this one decision. Another idea is that despite all of the analysis put is, the plumber may have already chosen what stock he wants to buy before he consciously chose. This article provided a nice review of the course. One implication may be that before making key life decisions (investing/loaning funds) it might be good to stop and remind employees frequently that what they are doing can be impacted by their current state. Reducing stress levels in the workplace could be one such way to improve decision making.
Toggle Commented Nov 4, 2014 on Econ 398 for Tuesday at Jolly Green General
The percentage of income spent on "festivals" by low-income groups seemed important. In class we watched the TED Talk about Oxytocin and how it impacts emotions. Oxytocin creates feelings of happiness and creates senses of trust. Oxytocin levels are found in highest concentration with the bride, brides mother, and in all involved with the wedding ceremony. This form of festival builds bonds of trust. Yet, in class we discussed that poorer countries have lower levels of exchange and trust. This assumption seems to either fly in the face of Abhijit V. Banerjee and Esther Duflo's findings. Looking for Oxytocin variations between "rich" and "poor" in this study would be an interesting study. My hypothesis is that nourishment would impact production of Oxytocin and the findings would possibly show lower productions levels in malnourished "poor" people. Just as testosterone inhibits absorption of Oxytocin, I assume malnourishment would have some impact on the ability of "poor" people to create bonds of trust.
Toggle Commented Sep 18, 2014 on 280 reading for Thursday at Jolly Green General
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Jan 14, 2013