Using controlled experiments to explore the social sciences, from theory to application, in the lab and in the field.
Centre for Behavioural and Experimental Social Science
The Centre for Behavioural and Experimental Social Science (CBESS) was established in 2007 by the Faculty of Social Science at University of East Anglia. The Centre's mission is to further the long tradition at UEA of using controlled laboratory and field experiments to study key questions in the social sciences, from foundational and methodological issues to applied research.
What's on in CBESS
NEWS-2013-35-01 NIBS postdocs announcement
Research Fellow posts available
NEWS-2013-30-01- Grischa Green Consumerism
Emission trading schemes limit green consumerism 30th January 2013
New research by Dr Grischa Perino from the School of Economics suggests that many of the recommendations made by government agencies and environmental NGOs about how to reduce an individual's carbon footprint are inappropriate in the European Union, because of its Emission Trading System (EU ETS) which caps emissions from certain industries and allows regulated sources to trade emission allowances. Advice commonly offered, for example by the Department of Energy and Climate Change, includes reducing the number of flights taken, replacing energy-hungry appliances and light bulbs with energy efficient ones and eating less red meat. But Dr Perino says that once the cap is in place installing energy efficient light bulbs, flying less and many other recommended actions have no impact on total emissions, as they are simply relocated to other sources via the EU ETS trading mechanism. Only eating less meat actually reduces total emissions as, in contrast to electricity production and aviation, emissions from agriculture are not covered by the EU ETS. "Consumers who want to reduce the impact of their consumption and lifestyle should focus on reducing emissions not regulated by the EU ETS. Driving your car less, eating less red meat and improving the insulation of your home substantially reduces your carbon footprint."
Link to full press release: http://www.uea.ac.uk/mac/comm/media/press/2013/January/emissions-trading-schemes-green-consumerism
Search Costs in Consumer Product Choice: Does Delaying the Provision of Information increase Choice Efficiency?
Date: May 2013 Reference Number: CBESS-13-05
Using online price comparison and shopping platforms makes experiencing slow connections, lags and waiting times for information an unfortunate reality. However, little attention has been paid to analyzing the effects of delayed provision of information on product choice behavior. In this article, I introduce an information processing model to derive search pattern predictions and test them in a multi-attribute choice laboratory experiment. Information requested during a search process was not provided immediately but after short time delays. Increasing these waiting times reduced the amount of looked-up information but did not affect choice quality. It seems that high time delays nudged decision-makers to think twice about how much and what kind of information should be looked-up, whereas low time delays induced inefficient over-searching. As technological advances are expected to further reduce Internet delay times, the observed change in search behavior could affect the profitability of manufacturers' production and retailers' advertising strategies.
Date: April 2013 Reference Number: CBESS-13-04
As a stress test of experimenter demand effects, we run an experiment where subjects can physically destroy coupons awarded to them. About one subject out of three does. Giving money back to the experimenter is possible in a separate task but is more consistent with an experimenter demand effect than an explanation based on altruism towards the experimenter. A measure of sensitivity to social pressure helps predict destruction when social information is provided.
PUB-2013-108 Tsusui Zizzo
Kei Tsusui; Daniel John Zizzo. Forthcoming. Group Status, Minorities and Trust. Experimental Economics.