NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Luigi Butera

Department of Economics
Copenhagen Business School
Denmark

E-Mail: EmailAddress: hidden: you can email any NBER-related person as first underscore last at nber dot org
Institutional Affiliation: Copenhagen Business School

NBER Working Papers and Publications

March 2019The Deadweight Loss of Social Recognition
with Robert Metcalfe, William Morrison, Dmitry Taubinsky: w25637
A growing body of empirical work shows that social recognition of individuals' behavior can meaningfully influence individuals’ choices. This paper studies whether social recognition is a socially efficient lever for influencing individuals’ choices. Because social recognition generates utility from esteem to some but disutility from shame to others, it can be either positive-sum, zero-sum, or negative-sum. This depends on whether the social recognition utility function is convex, linear, or concave, respectively. We develop a new revealed preferences methodology to investigate this question, which we deploy in a field experiment on promoting attendance to the YMCA of the Triangle Area. We find that social recognition increases YMCA attendance by 17-23% over a one-month period in our exper...
April 2017An Economic Approach to Alleviate the Crises of Confidence in Science: With an Application to the Public Goods Game
with John A. List: w23335
Novel empirical insights by their very nature tend to be unanticipated, and in some cases at odds with the current state of knowledge on the topic. The mechanics of statistical inference suggest that such initial findings, even when robust and statistically significant within the study, should not appreciably move priors about the phenomenon under investigation. Yet, a few well-conceived independent replications dramatically improve the reliability of novel findings. Nevertheless, the incentives to replicate are seldom in place in the sciences, especially within the social sciences. We propose a simple incentive-compatible mechanism to promote replications, and use experimental economics to highlight our approach. We begin by reporting results from an experiment in which we investigate...
 
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