Table of Contents

Cognitive Skills and the Development of Strategic Sophistication

Eduardo Fe, University of Manchester
David Gill, Purdue University, Department of Economics


NEUROECONOMICS eJOURNAL

"Cognitive Skills and the Development of Strategic Sophistication" Free Download

EDUARDO FE, University of Manchester
Email:
DAVID GILL, Purdue University, Department of Economics
Email:

In this paper we investigate how observable cognitive skills influence the development of strategic sophistication. To answer this question, we study experimentally how psychometric measures of theory-of-mind and cognitive ability (or `fluid intelligence') work together with age to determine the strategic ability and level-k behavior of children in a variety of incentivized strategic interactions. We find that better theory-of-mind and cognitive ability predict strategic sophistication in competitive games. Furthermore, age and cognitive ability act in tandem as complements, while age and theory-of-mind operate independently. Older children respond to information about the cognitive ability of their opponent, which provides support for the emergence of a sophisticated strategic theory-of-mind. Finally, theory-of-mind and age strongly predict whether children respond to intentions in a gift-exchange game, while cognitive ability has no influence, suggesting that different psychometric measures of cognitive skill correspond to different cognitive processes in strategic situations that involve the understanding of intentions.

^top

About this eJournal

This eJournal distributes working and accepted paper abstracts focused on research where economic outcomes are the product of many individual decisions, constrained by scarcity, and equilibrium forces that simultaneously shape a person's social networks and the institutionally defined rules of the game. Decisions are made by computations in the brain which produce action-choices that directly affect the homeostatic wellbeing of the individual and choices that indirectly change wellbeing by changing an individual's future constraints, the scope of their social networks, and their message sending rights within the institutions they participate. Neuroeconomics broadly speaking is interested in the study of these computations and the resulting choices they produce. This includes experiments that attempt to understand the mechanisms of neuronal computations that produce action-choices, theories which predict how neuronal computations in socio-economic environments produce decisions, outcomes and wellbeing, and policy which use our understanding of neuoroeconomic behavior to either build or defend better solutions to societal problems.

Editors: Michael C. Jensen, Harvard University, and Kevin A. McCabe, George Mason University

Submissions

To submit your research to SSRN, sign in to the SSRN User HeadQuarters, click the My Papers link on left menu and then the Start New Submission button at top of page.

Distribution Services

If your organization is interested in increasing readership for its research by starting a Research Paper Series, or sponsoring a Subject Matter eJournal, please email: sales@ssrn.com

Distributed by

Economics Research Network (ERN), a division of Social Science Electronic Publishing (SSEP) and Social Science Research Network (SSRN)

Directors

ERN SUBJECT MATTER EJOURNALS

MICHAEL C. JENSEN
Harvard Business School, SSRN, National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI), Harvard University - Accounting & Control Unit
Email: mjensen@hbs.edu

Please contact us at the above addresses with your comments, questions or suggestions for ERN-Sub.

Advisory Board

Neuroeconomics eJournal

ANDREW W. LO
Harris & Harris Group Professor, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Sloan School of Management, National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), Principal Investigator, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL)

P. READ MONTAGUE
Professor, Baylor University - Department of Neuroscience

VERNON L. SMITH
Professor of Economics and Law, Chapman University - Economic Science Institute, Chapman University School of Law