Sequential Learning under Informational Ambiguity

34 Pages Posted: 14 Nov 2019 Last revised: 18 Aug 2022

See all articles by Jaden Yang Chen

Jaden Yang Chen

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Date Written: September 1, 2019


This paper studies a sequential social learning problem in which individuals are ambiguous about other people’s data-generating processes. This paper finds that the occurrence of an information cascade can be interpreted as a result of ambiguity instead of details of the true data-generating process or its perception, as suggested by the literature. When there is sufficient ambiguity, an information cascade occurs almost surely for all possible data-generating processes. This paper further shows that standard results that feature no cascade may be fragile to arbitrarily small ambiguity.

Keywords: Social learning, information cascades, ambiguity, herding

JEL Classification: D81, D83, C72

Suggested Citation

Chen, Jaden Yang, Sequential Learning under Informational Ambiguity (September 1, 2019). Available at SSRN: or

Jaden Yang Chen (Contact Author)

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill ( email )

Chapel Hill, NC
United States

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