Constrained School Choice: An Experimental Study

Recently several school districts in the US have introduced school choice mechanisms to assign children to public schools. Chen and Sonmez (2006) report on an experimental study of three prominent mechanisms, complementing the theoretical results in favor of two of the three mechanisms. This paper shows that these results may change drastically when a real-life feature of school choice procedures is incorporated: students can only declare up to a fixed number of schools to be acceptable.

נוירו-כלכלה: אופנה או תקווה חדשה להבנת קבלת החלטות

הדוברים   ישראל אומן - האוניברסיטה העברית בירושלים ריצ'ארד אבשטיין - האוניברסיטה העברית בירושלים יצחק אהרן - אוניברסיטת בן גוריון סרג'יו הרט - האוניברסיטה העברית בירושלים יקיר לוין - אוניברסיטת בן גוריון יונתן לוינשטיין - האוניברסיטה העברית בירושלים איתמר פיטובסקי - האוניברסיטה העברית בירושלים

Another look at constructed and inherent preferences

There is a growing consensus that preferences are inherently constructive and largely determined by the task characteristics, the choice context, and the description of options. Although the fact that construction influences often play an important role is not in dispute, I argue that much of the evidence for preference construction reflects people's difficulty in evaluating absolute attribute values and tradeoffs and their tendency to gravitate to available relative evaluations.

THE 2007 NOBEL LAUREATES: THE ENGINEERING OF ECONOMICS

Leo Hurvicz, Eric Maskin and Roger Myerson shared the Nobel Prize in Economics in Dec. 2007 for their contributions to the theory of mechanism design. The field that started in a debate between liberals and socialists at the beginning of the last century emerged to be one of the most important fields of economics. Dealing primarily with the design of optimal incentives this field is often regarded as the engineering of economics. I will survey the main contributions of the three laureates and discuss briefly the persons behind them. No prior knowledge is required.

ON THE EFFICIENCY OF CATEGORIZATION IN LARGE GAMES

Inspired by the social psychology literature, we study the implications of categorical thinking on decision making in the context of a large normal-form game. Every agent has a categorization (partition) of her opponents and can only observe the average behavior in each category.

A NEW ENCOUNTER WITH THE HUMAN GENOME

The human genome was announced "completely solved" in 2003. This announcement came exactly 50 years after the publication of the seminal paper on the structure of DNA. The data collected in the human genome sequencing project made it possible to start a new area of research called "Genomics". It took only several years to realize that our earlier view of our genome was rather na?ve. In fact, many "text book facts" had to be revised. In this talk I will explain some of these unexpected recent discoveries.

A NEUROECONOMICS APPROACH TO THE MATCHING LAW

According to Herrnstein's matching law, the frequency of choosing an alternative in a repeated-choice experiment is equal to the fraction of rewards obtained from that alternative. I will discuss three questions concerning the matching law, which range from synaptic physiology to economic theory. (1) What is the neural basis of the matching law? I will show that matching behavior naturally emerges if changes in synaptic efficacies in the brain are proportional to the covariance of reward and neural activity. (2) Is there a normative theory of matching?

Internal no-regret with imperfect monitoring (joint with Ehud Lehrer)

Abstract:We define the notion of internal regret-free strategies in sequential decision problems with imperfect monitoring, and prove that an internal regret-free strategy exists.We show that if all the players in a repeated game with imperfect monitoring play an internal regret-free strategy, each one takes the other players as nature, then the empirical distribution on the entries of the matrix coonverges to the set of partially specified correlated equilibria.

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