Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1678245
 
 

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Leading, Learning and Herding


Steven J. Miller


Williams College

Daniel F. Stone


Bowdoin College - Department of Economics

July 1, 2012

Mathematical Social Sciences, Forthcoming

Abstract:     
We analyze a game theoretic model of social learning about a consumption good with endogenous timing and heterogeneous accuracy of private information. We show that if individuals value their reputation for the degree to which they are informed, this reduces the incentive to learn by observing others and exacerbates the incentive to consume the good before others, i.e., to attempt to be an "opinion leader." Consequently, reputation concerns reduce the average delay of consumption of new goods and weaken the social information value of early consumption. In an extension, we show that reputation concerns increase the probability of herding on consumption of both high and low quality goods.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 28

Keywords: opinion leaders, social learning, endogenous timing, herding, reputation, status

JEL Classification: C73, D82, D83

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Date posted: September 19, 2010 ; Last revised: January 9, 2013

Suggested Citation

Miller, Steven J. and Stone, Daniel F., Leading, Learning and Herding (July 1, 2012). Mathematical Social Sciences, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1678245 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1678245

Contact Information

Steven J. Miller
Williams College ( email )
Williamstown, MA 01267
United States
Daniel F. Stone (Contact Author)
Bowdoin College - Department of Economics ( email )
Brunswick, ME 04011
United States
6463387833 (Phone)
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