Brit Grosskopf

Professor of Economics

Department of Economics
University of Exeter
Streatham Court
United Kingdom
b.grosskopf /at/ exeter /dot/ ac /dot/ uk

brit grosskopf
working papers
feele lab

Working Papers

Working Papers

"On the Demand for Expressing Emotions," with Kristian López, revisions requested from the American Economic Review
People communicate in economic interactions either aiming to alter material outcomes or because they derive direct satisfaction from expressing. We focus on the latter noninstrumental motivation and find that this less researched aspect of expression has important economic implications. In particular, we experimentally study ex-post verbal expression in a modified Power-to-Take game and document people's willingness to pay for this kind of expression possibility. Our experiment contributes to previous studies discussing the role of mood-emotional states in economics. We find that purely expressive as well as reciprocal motives are both non-trivial components of the valuation for noninstrumental expression. We demonstrate that expression possibilities have important impacts on welfare beyond what our standard economic view predicts

"Do you mind me paying less? Measuring Other-Regarding Preferences in the Market for Taxis," with Graeme Pearce
We present a natural field experiment designed to measure other-regarding preferences in the market for taxis. We employed testers of varying ethnicity to take a number of predetermined taxi journeys. In each case we endowed them with only 80% of the expected fare. Testers revealed the amount they could afford to pay to the driver mid-journey and asked for a portion of the journey for free. In a 2x2 between-subjects design we vary the length of the journey and whether drivers have reputational concerns or not. We find that the majority of drivers give at least part of the journey for free and over 25% complete the journey. Giving is found to be proportional to the length of the journey, and the drivers' reputational concerns do not explain their behaviour. Evidence of strong out-group negativity against black testers by both white and South-Asian drivers is also reported. The data lend support to the quantitative predictions of experiments that measure other-regarding preferences, and shed further light on how discrimination can manifest itself within our preferences.

"Discrimination in a Deprived Neighbourhood: A Framed Field Experiment," with Graeme Pearce
We present a framed field experiment that examines the nature and extent of discrimination faced by Muslims. This is done in a high stakes setting, achieved by studying the behaviour of a previously unstudied population: the poorest people in England. Subjects play Other-Other Games and Dictator Games with stakes sizes equal to up to 18% of their weekly income. We subtly vary the ethnicity of the receivers by providing dictators with surnames randomly drawn from the electoral register, including treatments that allow us to parse behaviour into either in-group favouritism or out-group negativity. We find evidence that the differential treatment of Muslims is a result of out-group negativity, rather than a consequence of in-group favouritism. We uniquely advance the literature on discrimination through the estimation of a structural model of group-contingent social preferences, which we exploit to perform counterfactual simulations. Our results provide a compelling explanation for the documented negative treatment of Muslims and the motivation behind the discriminatory behaviour against them.

"An Experiment on Asymmetric Information in First-Price Common-Value Auctions: The Blessed Winner," with Lucas Rentschler and Rajiv Sarin
In common-value auctions bidders have access to public information, and may also hold private information prior to choosing their bids. The literature has predominately focused on the case in which bidders are symmetrically and privately informed, and finds that aggressive bidding such that payoffs are negative is common (the winners' curse). In practice, bidders often only have access to public information, and use this information to form (possibly differing) beliefs. In addition a bidder who is not privately informed may also face bidders who are. We examine bidding behavior of both informed and uninformed bidders, and vary the information structure they face. We find that uninformed bidders underbid dramatically and persistently, while informed bidders tend to overbid. Our results highlight the importance of correctly modeling the information available to bidders.

"Asymmetric Information in Contests: Theory and Experiments," with Lucas Rentschler and Rajiv Sarin

"Rational Reasoning or Adaptive Behavior? Evidence from Two-Person Beauty Contest Games," with Rosemarie Nagel

"Reputation and Advice: Political Correctness in the Laboratory," with Rajiv Sarin

Work in Progress

"Choosing which Game to Play: Experimental Evidence from 2 and 4 player Beauty-Contest Games," with Lawrence Choo

"The Effect of Induced Emotions on Sanctioning Behaviour," with Michalis Drouvelis

"Merging Reinforcement and Directional Learning."