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Title: The ‘materials’ of experimental economics: technological versus behavioural experiments
Authors: Santos, A. C.
Keywords: Experimental economics
Incentive compatible mechanisms
Auction experiments
Ultimatum game experiments
Issue Date: 2006
Publisher: Dinâmia
Series/Report no.: Dinâmia Working Paper
Abstract: In the natural sciences there is a general consensus on the epistemic value conferred to by the participation of the ‘material world’ in the experimental process of Knowledge production. This is no different in experimental economics. However, an inquiry into the epistemic role of the ‘materials’ of economics is still incipient. The present paper is meant as a contribution to this inquiry. Two categories of experiments are identified according to the differentiated role of the ‘materials’ of economics. Technological experiments produce knowledge of how to design market institutions for specific purposes. The crucial ‘material’ of these experiments is the institution that organizes the interactions of the experimental participants. Behavioral experiments produce knowledge of individual behavior in varied decision contexts. The crucial ‘material’ of these experiments is the agency of the experimental participants. FCC spectrum auctions and ultimatum game experiments illustrate technological and behavioral experiments, respectively. General policy implications are also drawn for each kind of experiment.
Peer reviewed: Sim
Appears in Collections:DINÂMIA'CET-WP - Working papers com arbitragem científica

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