'Outlier Blindness': Efficient Coding Generates an Inability to Represent Extreme Values
31 Pages Posted: 29 Mar 2018 Last revised: 18 Jan 2019
Date Written: December 15, 2018
How do people perceive outliers? Building on a well-established theory from neuroscience, we conjecture that people are inherently hampered in the way they perceive outliers because the human brain has been designed to devote neural activity to representing the most probable values at the expense of the improbable ones. We find support for this conjecture in a series of controlled laboratory experiments.
Keywords: Neuroeconomics, Tail Risk, Efficient Coding, Normalization Theory, Adaptation, Decision-Making Under Uncertainty
JEL Classification: C91, D87
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation