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Full-Text Articles in Behavioral Economics

The Effect Of Police Oversight On Crime And Allegations Of Misconduct: Evidence From Chicago, Bocar A. Ba, Roman G. Rivera Oct 2019

The Effect Of Police Oversight On Crime And Allegations Of Misconduct: Evidence From Chicago, Bocar A. Ba, Roman G. Rivera

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Does policing the police increase crime? We avoid simultaneity effects of increased public oversight during a major scandal by identifying events in Chicago that only impacted officers’ self-imposed monitoring. We estimate crime’s response to self- and public-monitoring using regression discontinuity and generalized synthetic control methods. Self-monitoring, triggered by police union memos, significantly reduced serious complaints without impacting crime or effort. However, after a scandal, both civilian complaints and crime rates rise, suggesting that higher crime rates following heightened oversight results from de-policing and civilian behavior simultaneously changing. Our research suggests that proactive internal accountability improves police-community relations without increasing ...


Justice Begins Before Trial: How To Nudge Inaccurate Pretrial Rulings Using Behavioral Law And Economic Theory And Uniform Commercial Laws, Michael Gentithes May 2019

Justice Begins Before Trial: How To Nudge Inaccurate Pretrial Rulings Using Behavioral Law And Economic Theory And Uniform Commercial Laws, Michael Gentithes

William & Mary Law Review

Injustice in criminal cases often takes root before trial begins. Overworked criminal judges must resolve difficult pretrial evidentiary issues that determine the charges the State will take to trial and the range of sentences the defendant will face. Wrong decisions on these issues often lead to wrongful convictions. As behavioral law and economic theory suggests, judges who are cognitively busy and receive little feedback on these topics from appellate courts rely upon intuition, rather than deliberative reasoning, to resolve these questions. This leads to inconsistent rulings, which prosecutors exploit to expand the scope of evidentiary exceptions that almost always disfavor ...


Time-Shifted Rationality And The Law Of Law's Leverage: Behavioral Economics Meets Behavioral Biology, Owen D. Jones Apr 2019

Time-Shifted Rationality And The Law Of Law's Leverage: Behavioral Economics Meets Behavioral Biology, Owen D. Jones

Owen Jones

A flood of recent scholarship explores legal implications of seemingly irrational behaviors by invoking cognitive psychology and notions of bounded rationality. In this article, I argue that advances in behavioral biology have largely overtaken existing notions of bounded rationality, revealing them to be misleadingly imprecise - and rooted in outdated assumptions that are not only demonstrably wrong, but also wrong in ways that have material implications for subsequent legal conclusions. This can be remedied. Specifically, I argue that behavioral biology offers three things of immediate use. First, behavioral biology can lay a foundation for both revising bounded rationality and fashioning a ...


The Evolution Of Irrationality, Owen D. Jones Apr 2019

The Evolution Of Irrationality, Owen D. Jones

Owen Jones

The place of the rational actor model in the analysis of individual and social behavior relevant to law remains unresolved. In recent years, scholars have sought frameworks to explain: a) disjunctions between seemingly rational behavior and seemingly irrational behavior; b) the origins of and influences on law-relevant preferences, and c) the nonrandom development of norms. This Article explains two components of an evolutionary framework that, building from accessible insights of behavioral biology, can encompass all three. The components are: "time-shifted rationality" and "the law of law's leverage."


Endowment Effects In Chimpanzees, Owen D. Jones, Sarah F. Brosnan, Susan P. Lambeth, Mary Catherine Mareno, Amanda S. Richardson, Steven Schapiro Apr 2019

Endowment Effects In Chimpanzees, Owen D. Jones, Sarah F. Brosnan, Susan P. Lambeth, Mary Catherine Mareno, Amanda S. Richardson, Steven Schapiro

Owen Jones

Human behavior is not always consistent with standard rational choice predictions. The much-investigated variety of apparent deviations from rational choice predictions provides a promising arena for the merger of economics and biology. Although little is known about the extent to which other species also exhibit these seemingly irrational patterns of human decision-making and choice behavior, similarities across species would suggest a common evolutionary root to the phenomena.

The present study investigated whether chimpanzees exhibit an endowment effect, a seemingly paradoxical behavior in which humans tend to value a good they have just come to possess more than they would have ...


Law And Behavioral Biology, Owen D. Jones, Timothy H. Goldsmith Apr 2019

Law And Behavioral Biology, Owen D. Jones, Timothy H. Goldsmith

Owen Jones

Society uses law to encourage people to behave differently than they would behave in the absence of law. This fundamental purpose makes law highly dependent on sound understandings of the multiple causes of human behavior. The better those understandings, the better law can achieve social goals with legal tools. In this Article, Professors Jones and Goldsmith argue that many long held understandings about where behavior comes from are rapidly obsolescing as a consequence of developments in the various fields constituting behavioral biology. By helping to refine law's understandings of behavior's causes, they argue, behavioral biology can help to ...


Socioeconomic Influences On Property Crime Rates: A Study In Virginia's Counties, Mary Passley Apr 2019

Socioeconomic Influences On Property Crime Rates: A Study In Virginia's Counties, Mary Passley

Student Scholar Showcase

Most research on factors and causes of crime, whether property or violent crime, focuses on individuals’ behavior or their surrounding environment. In this research, I explore the idea of socioeconomic factors correlated to property crime. I conducted a retrospective design to fully explore United States Census data and crime data gathered by the Bureau of Justice Statistics to discover statistically significant variables connected to property crime. Significant findings were shown by average people per house and retail sales per capita in all counties. Additional significant findings were percent employment change and percent with high school degree or higher in low ...


The Fire Rises: Refining The Pennsylvania Fireworks Law So That Fewer People Get Burned, Sean P. Kraus Apr 2019

The Fire Rises: Refining The Pennsylvania Fireworks Law So That Fewer People Get Burned, Sean P. Kraus

Dickinson Law Review

On October 30, 2017, the General Assembly of Pennsylvania passed an act that repealed the state’s fireworks law, which had prohibited the sale of most fireworks to Pennsylvanian consumers for nearly 80 years. The law’s replacement generally permits Pennsylvanians over 18 years old to purchase, possess, and use “Consumer Fireworks.” Bottle rockets, firecrackers, Roman candles, and aerial shells are now available to amateur celebrants for holidays like Independence Day and New Year’s Eve. The law also regulates a category of larger “Display Fireworks,” sets standards for fireworks vendors, and introduces a 12-percent excise tax on fireworks sales ...


Supplying Slaves: The Disguise Of Greener Pastures: An Exploratory Study Of Human Trafficking In Uganda, Kyla Johnson Apr 2019

Supplying Slaves: The Disguise Of Greener Pastures: An Exploratory Study Of Human Trafficking In Uganda, Kyla Johnson

Independent Study Project (ISP) Collection

The purpose of this study was to evaluate labor migration in Uganda with a specific focus on the role labor recruitment agencies play in transporting people and how certain circumstances such as lack of knowledge of safe migration can leave people vulnerable to human trafficking. Labor externalization is beneficial specifically for developing countries because it provides jobs for the robust and available labor in these countries. Nonetheless, when reports appear that young girls are stranded abroad in the middle east after being taken there for work, labor recruitment agencies are first to receive the blame. Although Uganda issued a ban ...


The Impact Of The Durbin Amendment On Banks, Merchants, And Consumers, Vladimir Mukharlyamov, Natasha Sarin Jan 2019

The Impact Of The Durbin Amendment On Banks, Merchants, And Consumers, Vladimir Mukharlyamov, Natasha Sarin

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

After the Great Recession, new regulatory interventions were introduced to protect consumers and reduce the costs of financial products. Some voiced concern that direct price regulation was unlikely to help consumers, because banks offset losses in one domain by increasing the prices that they charge consumers for other products. This paper studies this issue using the Durbin Amendment, which decreased the interchange fees that banks are allowed to charge merchants for processing debit transactions. Merchant interchange fees, previously averaging 2 percent of transaction value, were capped at $0.22, decreasing bank revenue by $6.5 billion annually. The objective of ...


Mass Atrocities And Their Prevention, Charles H. Anderton, Jurgen Brauer Jan 2019

Mass Atrocities And Their Prevention, Charles H. Anderton, Jurgen Brauer

Economics Department Working Papers

Counting conservatively, and ignoring physical injuries and mental trauma, data show about 100 million mass atrocity-related deaths since 1900. Occurring in war and in peacetime, and of enormous scale, severity, and brutality, they are geographically widespread, occur with surprising frequency, and can be long-lasting in their adverse effects on economic and human development, wellbeing, and wealth. As such, they are a major economic concern. This article synthesizes very diverse and widely dispersed theoretical and empirical literatures, addressing two gaps: a “mass atrocities gap” in the economics literature and an “economics gap” in mass atrocities scholarship. Our goals are, first, for ...


Innovación Social En Colombia “Caso De Emprendimiento” Fundación Acción Interna, Lina María Muñoz Luengas, Heidi Lorena Medina Franco Jan 2019

Innovación Social En Colombia “Caso De Emprendimiento” Fundación Acción Interna, Lina María Muñoz Luengas, Heidi Lorena Medina Franco

Administración de Empresas

El presente artículo de investigación es de índole cualitativo y tiene como objetivo desde la perspectiva de la innovación social analizar las variables de innovación proactiva, reactiva y el tipo de emprendedor. Este artículo propone la necesidad de relacionar la revisión de literatura conceptual, con el fin de entender la relación entre innovación social y emprendimiento femenino, se busca profundizar en conceptos como lo son Innovación Social Vs Emprendimiento Social, Emprendimientos Femeninos en Colombia y Estado actual de las cárceles en Colombia. Donde se da a conocer el caso de “Fundación Acción Interna”, esta busca la inclusión, reconciliación y resocialización ...


Data Disparity: Tiered Pricing As An Alternative To Consumer Iot Data Privacy Regulations, Matthew Lostocco Jan 2019

Data Disparity: Tiered Pricing As An Alternative To Consumer Iot Data Privacy Regulations, Matthew Lostocco

Honors Theses and Capstones

In recent years, Internet of Things (IoT) devices have exploded on the consumer scene. These emerging products bring new technological capabilities into our everyday lives. IoT is projected to contribute anywhere from $4-11 trillion to the global economy and companies are investing billions of dollars into the technology. However, with the vast amount of data that IoT devices collect, consumers are burdening the risk of having their personal data breached or sold to third parties. This paper first identifies why consumers may be weary or willing towards providing their personal data and how unconscious biases in the purchasing process cause ...


Behavioral Finance, Decumulation And The Regulatory Strategy For Robo-Advice, Tom Baker, Benedict Dellaert Jul 2018

Behavioral Finance, Decumulation And The Regulatory Strategy For Robo-Advice, Tom Baker, Benedict Dellaert

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This working paper surveys the decumulation services offered by investment robo-advisors as a case study with which to examine regulatory and market structure issues raised by automated financial advice. We provide a short introduction to decumulation, describing some of the uncertainties involved in identifying optimal decumulation strategies and sketching a few of the ‘rules of thumb’ that financial advisors have developed in this area in the face of this uncertainty. Next we describe behavioral effects that could inhibit consumers from following an optimal decumulation strategy, concluding that, left to their own devices, consumers are likely to make sub-optimal decumulation decisions ...


Proposition 47 And Crime: A Difference In Differences Analysis Of Incarceration Rates And Crime Using Border Counties, Brian J. Fischer May 2018

Proposition 47 And Crime: A Difference In Differences Analysis Of Incarceration Rates And Crime Using Border Counties, Brian J. Fischer

School of Arts & Sciences Theses

California passed Proposition 47 by vote and changed the way the state punishes drug and theft. I find an increase in crime using a difference in differences model by computing the change in thefts with the change in inmates. This effect sides with anecdotal claims and disagrees with empirical studies.


The Ethical Challenges Of The Marketplace, Eduardo M. Peñalver Apr 2018

The Ethical Challenges Of The Marketplace, Eduardo M. Peñalver

Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy

No abstract provided.


Deadlier Road Accidents? Traffic Safety Regulations And Heterogeneous Motorists’ Behavior, Christine Ho, Madhav S. Aney Mar 2018

Deadlier Road Accidents? Traffic Safety Regulations And Heterogeneous Motorists’ Behavior, Christine Ho, Madhav S. Aney

Research Collection School Of Economics

In 2003, China enacted the Road Traffic Safety Law in an attempt to promote traffic safety.We employ a difference-in-differences strategy on province level data, where fire accidentsare used as a control group for road accidents, to estimate the effects of the law on road accidents and casualties. Our findings suggest that while the law was successful in decreasing thenumber of accidents and casualties, the ratio of deaths to accidents and injuries to accidentsincreased. Exploring the potential channels, we find no evidence that “hit-and-kill” incentives,that is, incentives for motorists to kill the pedestrians that they hit due to China ...


A Cross-Sectional Exploration Of Household Financial Reactions And Homebuyer Awareness Of Registered Sex Offenders In A Rural, Suburban, And Urban County., John Charles Navarro Aug 2017

A Cross-Sectional Exploration Of Household Financial Reactions And Homebuyer Awareness Of Registered Sex Offenders In A Rural, Suburban, And Urban County., John Charles Navarro

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

As stigmatized persons, registered sex offenders betoken instability in communities. Depressed home sale values are associated with the presence of registered sex offenders even though the public is largely unaware of the presence of registered sex offenders. Using a spatial multilevel approach, the current study examines the role registered sex offenders influence sale values of homes sold in 2015 for three U.S. counties (rural, suburban, and urban) located in Illinois and Kentucky within the social disorganization framework. Homebuyers were surveyed to examine whether awareness of local registered sex offenders and the homebuyer’s community type operate as moderators between ...


The Inevitability And Ubiquity Of Cycling In All Feasible Legal Regimes: A Formal Proof, Leo Katz, Alvaro Sandroni Jun 2017

The Inevitability And Ubiquity Of Cycling In All Feasible Legal Regimes: A Formal Proof, Leo Katz, Alvaro Sandroni

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Intransitive choices, or cycling, are generally held to be the mark of irrationality. When a set of rules engenders such choices, it is usually held to be irrational and in need of reform. In this article, we prove a series of theorems, demonstrating that all feasible legal regimes are going to be rife with cycling. Our first result, the legal cycling theorem, shows that unless a legal system meets some extremely restrictive conditions, it will lead to cycling. The discussion that follows, along with our second result, the combination theorem, shows exactly why these conditions are almost impossible to meet ...


I Share, Therefore It's Mine, Donald J. Kochan Apr 2017

I Share, Therefore It's Mine, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

Uniquely interconnecting lessons from law, psychology, and economics, this article aims to provide a more enriched understanding of what it means to “share” property in the sharing economy. It explains that there is an “ownership prerequisite” to the sharing of property, drawing in part from the findings of research in the psychology of child development to show when and why children start to share. They do so only after developing what psychologists call “ownership understanding.” What the psychological research reveals, then, is that the property system is well suited to create recognizable and enforceable ownership norms that include the rights ...


The Retirement Strategy Of Supreme Court Justices: An Economic Approach, Kayla M. Joyce Apr 2017

The Retirement Strategy Of Supreme Court Justices: An Economic Approach, Kayla M. Joyce

Honors Scholar Theses

Previous research has identified strategic behavior in the nomination, confirmation, and retirement processes of the Supreme Court, each independently. This paper analyzes the interaction between the justices, the president, and the Senate in these processes. I constructed a game theoretic model to consider the nomination and approval process of Supreme Court justices and the change in dynamics that might result from an impending election. I hypothesize that sitting justices take into account the party affiliations of the president and the Senate when they are deciding whether it is the optimal time to retire to achieve their own strategic objectives. The ...


Behavioral Public Choice And The Law, Gary M. Lucas Jr., Slaviša Tasić Mar 2017

Behavioral Public Choice And The Law, Gary M. Lucas Jr., Slaviša Tasić

Gary M. Lucas Jr.

Behavioral public choice is the study of irrationality among political actors. In this context, irrationality means systematic bias, a deviation from rational expectations, or other departure from economists’ conception of rationality. Behavioral public choice scholars extend the insights of behavioral economics to the political realm and show that irrational behavior is an important source of government failure. This Article makes an original contribution to the legal literature by systematically reviewing the findings of behavioral public choice and explaining their implications for the law and legal institutions. We discuss the various biases and heuristics that lead political actors to support and ...


The Perverse Consequences Of Disclosing Standard Terms, Tess Wilkinson-Ryan Jan 2017

The Perverse Consequences Of Disclosing Standard Terms, Tess Wilkinson-Ryan

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Although assent is the doctrinal and theoretical hallmark of contract, its relevance for form contracts has been drastically undermined by the overwhelming evidence that no one reads standard terms. Until now, most political and academic discussions of this phenomenon have acknowledged the truth of universally unread contracts, but have assumed that even unread terms are at best potentially helpful, and at worst harmless. This Article makes the empirical case that unread terms are not a neutral part of American commerce; instead, the mere fact of fine print inhibits reasonable challenges to unfair deals. The experimental study reported here tests the ...


The Economics Of Healthcare Rationing, Michael D. Frakes, Matthew B. Frank, Kyle Rozema Jan 2017

The Economics Of Healthcare Rationing, Michael D. Frakes, Matthew B. Frank, Kyle Rozema

Faculty Scholarship

This article examines the economics of healthcare rationing. We begin with an overview of the various dimensions across which healthcare rationing operates, or at least has the potential to operate, in the first place. We then describe the types of economic analyses used in healthcare rationing decision-making, with particular reference to cost-benefit analysis and cost-effectiveness analysis. We also discuss healthcare rationing in practice, such as how economic analyses inform decisions regarding which services to cover, and conclude by discussing various practical and conceptual challenges that may arise with economic analyses and that span both economics and ethics.


Contract Consideration And Behavior, David A. Hoffman, Zev. J. Eigen Jan 2017

Contract Consideration And Behavior, David A. Hoffman, Zev. J. Eigen

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Contract recitals are ubiquitous. Yet, we have a thin understanding of how individuals behave with respect to these doctrinally important relics. Most jurists follow Lon Fuller in concluding that when read, contract recitals accomplish their purpose: to caution against inconsiderate contractual obligation. Notwithstanding the foundational role that this assumption has played in doctrinal and theoretical debates, it has not been tested. This Article offers what we believe to be the first experimental evidence of the effects of formal recitals of contract obligation — and, importantly too, disclaimers of contractual obligation — on individual behavior. In a series of online experiments, we found ...


Conservatism And Switcher's Curse, Aaron Edlin Dec 2016

Conservatism And Switcher's Curse, Aaron Edlin

Aaron Edlin

This paper formally models the virtues of Edmund Burke's conservatism, characterizes the optimal level of conservatism, and applies the model to management, law, and policy.  I begin by introducing ``switcher's curse,'' a trap in which a decision maker systematically switches too often. Decision makers suffer from switcher's curse if they forget the reason that they maintained incumbent policies in the past and if they naively compare rival and incumbent policies with no bias for incumbent policies.   Conservatism emerges as a heuristic to avoid switcher's curse. The longer a process or policy has been in place, the ...


More Than Just A Game: Ethical Issues In Gamification, Tae Wan Kim, Kevin Werbach Jun 2016

More Than Just A Game: Ethical Issues In Gamification, Tae Wan Kim, Kevin Werbach

Legal Studies and Business Ethics Papers

Gamification is the use of elements and techniques from video game design in non-game contexts. Amid the rapid growth of this practice, normative questions have been under-explored. The primary goal of this article is to develop a normatively sophisticated and descriptively rich account for appropriately addressing major ethical considerations associated with gamification. The framework suggests that practitioners and designers should be precautious about, primarily, but not limited to, whether or not their use of gamification practices: (1) takes unfair advantage of workers (e.g., exploitation); (2) infringes any involved workers’ or customers’ autonomy (e.g., manipulation); (3) intentionally or unintentionally ...


A Constitutional Political Economy Perspective On The Colonization Of Mars, Shashank Sirivolu Apr 2016

A Constitutional Political Economy Perspective On The Colonization Of Mars, Shashank Sirivolu

Honors Theses (PPE)

NASA has released an account of the agency's plans for a mission to Mars. Private organizations, like SpaceX, too have expressed a goal to visit or, in some cases, even establish settlements on Mars. Yet the prospect of establishing settlements, that is, colonizing - as opposed to simply exploring - raises a number of issues. The focus of this study is on the emergence of institutions and organizations on an extraterrestrial planet like Mars. Specifically, the thesis will explore the conscious design of organizations and institutions of collective action, from the Constitutional Political Economy perspective.


Justice, Claims And Prioritarianism: Room For Desert?, Matthew D. Adler Jan 2016

Justice, Claims And Prioritarianism: Room For Desert?, Matthew D. Adler

Faculty Scholarship

Does individual desert matter for distributive justice? Is it relevant, for purposes of justice, that the pattern of distribution of justice’s “currency” (be it well-being, resources, preference-satisfaction, capabilities, or something else) is aligned in one or another way with the pattern of individual desert?

This paper examines the nexus between desert and distributive justice through the lens of individual claims. The concept of claims (specifically “claims across outcomes”) is a fruitful way to flesh out the content of distributive justice so as to be grounded in the separateness of persons. A claim is a relation between a person and ...


Everything’S Bigger In Texas: Except The Medmal Settlements, Tom Baker, Eric Helland, Jonathan Klick Jan 2016

Everything’S Bigger In Texas: Except The Medmal Settlements, Tom Baker, Eric Helland, Jonathan Klick

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Recent work using Texas closed claim data finds that physicians are rarely required to use personal assets in medical malpractice settlements even when plaintiffs secure judgments above the physician's insurance limits. In equilibrium, this should lead physicians to purchase less insurance. Qualitative research on the behavior of plaintiffs suggests that there is a norm under which plaintiffs agree not to pursue personal assets as long as defendants are not grossly underinsured. This norm operates as a soft constraint on physicians. All other things equal, while physicians want to lower their coverage, they do not want to violate the norm ...