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Focal points revisited: team reasoning, the principle of insufficient reason and cognitive hierarchy theory

Bardsley, N. and Ule, A. (2017) Focal points revisited: team reasoning, the principle of insufficient reason and cognitive hierarchy theory. Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 133. pp. 74-86. ISSN 0167-2681

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2016.10.004

Abstract/Summary

It is well-established that people can coordinate their behaviour on focal points in games with multiple equilibria, but it is not firmly established how. Much coordination game data might be explained by team reasoning, a departure from individualistic choice theory. However, a less exotic explanation is also available based on best-responding to uniform randomisation. We test these two accounts experimentally, using novel games which distinguish their predictions. The results are inconsistent with best-responding to randomisation but consistent with team reasoning as the modal behaviour, though there is also unexplained heterogeneity. Increasing the difficulty of the coordination tasks produces some behaviour suggestive of response to randomisation, but this is a minor feature of the data.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Agriculture, Policy and Development > Economic and Social Sciences Division > Food Economics and Marketing (FEM)
ID Code:67904
Publisher:Elsevier

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