Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=460141
 
 

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Imitation - Theory and Experimental Evidence


Jose Apesteguia


Universitat Pompeu Fabra - Department of Economics and Business (DEB)

Steffen Huck


University College London - Department of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Joerg Oechssler


University of Heidelberg - Alfred Weber Institute for Economics

October 2003

CESifo Working Paper Series No. 1049

Abstract:     
We introduce a generalized theoretical approach to study imitation models and subject the models to rigorous experimental testing. In our theoretical analysis we find that the different predictions of previous imitation models are due to different informational assumptions, not to different behavioral rules. It is more important whom one imitates rather than how. In a laboratory experiment we test the different theories by systematically varying information conditions. We find that the generalized imitation model predicts the differences between treatments well. The data also provide support for imitation on the individual level, both in terms of choice and in terms of perception. But imitation is not unconditional. Rather individuals' propensity to imitate more successful actions is increasing in payoff differences.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 47

Keywords: evolutionary game theory, stochastic stability, imitation, Cournot markets, experiments

JEL Classification: C72, C91, C92, D43, L13

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Date posted: November 6, 2003  

Suggested Citation

Apesteguia, Jose and Huck, Steffen and Oechssler, Joerg, Imitation - Theory and Experimental Evidence (October 2003). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 1049. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=460141

Contact Information

Jose Apesteguia
Universitat Pompeu Fabra - Department of Economics and Business (DEB) ( email )
Barcelona, 08005
Spain
HOME PAGE: http://www.econ.upf.es/~apesteguia/
Steffen Huck (Contact Author)
University College London - Department of Economics ( email )
Gower Street
London WC1E 6BT, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom
+44 207 679 5895 (Phone)
+44 207 916 2774 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/~uctpshu/
CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)
Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany
Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)
P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany
Joerg Oechssler
University of Heidelberg - Alfred Weber Institute for Economics ( email )
Grabengasse 14
Heidelberg, D-69117
Germany
+49 6221 54 3548 (Phone)
+49 6221 54 3630 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://www.awi.uni-heidelberg.de/with2/theorie2/Team/Oechssler/Oechssler_main.html
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