Y2K Bibliography of Experimental Economics and Social Science
Signaling in Games and Markets

Charles A. Holt, cah2k@virginia.edu, suggestions and corrections welcome
(for online and personal use only)


Anderson, Chris, Colin Camerer, and Tech H. Ho (1998) “Learning and Logic-Based Refinements in Signaling Games,” University of Pennsylvania, Discussion Paper, presented at the Fall 1998 ESA Meeting. Keywords: experiments, game theory, refinements, learning. Abstract: Experience-weighted attraction models of learning are adapted to explain patterns of adjustment in signaling games with many periods. Email Contact: camerer@hss.caltech.edu

Banks, Jeffrey S., Colin Camerer, and David P. Porter (1994) “An Experimental Analysis of Nash Refinements in Signaling Games,” Games and Economic Behavior, 6:1 (January), 1-31. Keywords: experiments, information, signaling, Nash refinements. Abstract: Subjects play a series of randomly ordered signaling games. These games have multiple equilibria, one of which is "ruled out" by a refinement of the sequential Nash concept. For the games considered, the refinements predict well, at least up to the Divinity refinement ("refine to divine" as one coauthor remarked). Email Contact: bnks@hss.caltech.edu

Beutin, Nikolas, and Abdolkarim Sadrieh (1999) “The Effect of Retaliation and Cooperation on the Profitability of Entry Deterrence Strategies,” Tilburg University, Discussion Paper, presented at the Fall 1999 European Regional ESA Meeting. Keywords: experiments, markets, entry deterrence, pooling, separating, signaling. Abstract: The potential observes the first-period output decision of a monopolist before deciding whether to enter and compete in the second stage (Cournot) market. The monopolist's cost is private information, both separating and pooling equilibria are observed. Email Contact:
sadrieh@united.econ.uni-bonn.de

Blume, Andreas, Douglas DeJong, Y.-G. Kim, and G. Sprinkle (1998) “Experimental Evidence on the Evolution of Meaning of Messages in Sender-Receiver Games,” American Economic Review, 88:5 (December), 1323-1340. Keywords: experiments, game theory, information, signaling games, learning.

Blume, Andreas, Douglas DeJong, George R. Neumann, and N.E. Savin (1998) “Learning in Sender-Receiver Games,” University of Iowa, Discussion Paper, presented at the Summer 1998 ESA Meetings. Keywords: experiments, game theory, signaling games, belief learning, reinforcement learning, econometrics. Abstract: This paper compares the explanatory power of belief and reinforcement learning models in the context of signaling games. Email Contact: ablume@blue.weeg.uiowa.edu

Brandts, Jordi, Jacob K. Goeree, and Charles A. Holt (1996, revised 1999) “Naive Bayesian Learning and Adjustment to Equilibrium in Signaling Games,” University of Virginia, Discussion Paper. Keywords: experiments, game theory, signaling games, learning, simulation, refinements. Abstract: A logit learning model is used to explain dynamic adjustment patterns in signaling games. Simulations with the estimated learning and error parameters reproduce the qualitative behavior patterns in the choices made by human subjects. For some games, these adjustment paths lead to equilibria that are ruled out by the intuitive criterion and other refinements.

Brandts, Jordi, and Charles A. Holt (1992) “An Experimental Test of Equilibrium Dominance in Signaling Games,” American Economic Review, 82:5 (December), 1350-1365. Keywords: experiments, game theory, signaling games, equilibrium dominance, intuitive criterion, refinements. Abstract: Behavior in sender-receiver signaling games converges to the "more refined" equilibrium in games that are based on the "beer-quiche" example. However, behavior does not converge to the more refined equilibrium when the payoffs are manipulated in a way so that decisions in initial matchings conform to "out of equilibrium" beliefs that are ruled out by the refinements. The conclusion is that beliefs are determined by experience in the process of adjustment, not by deductive logic that begins with players in equilibrium and then considers what can be inferred if a player deviates. Email Contact: brandts@cc.uab.es

Brandts, Jordi, and Charles A. Holt (1993) “Adjustment Patterns and Equilibrium Selection in Experimental Signaling Games,” International Journal of Game Theory, 22:3 279-302. Keywords: experiments, game theory, signaling games, refinements, equilibrium selection, learning, equilibrium dominance, intuitive criterion. Abstract: Signaling games with "reverse type dependence" lead to behavior in the laboratory that violates all of the standard refinements of the Nash equilibrium (intuitive criterion, divinity, strategic stability, etc.) The history of the adjustment path seems to determine out-of-equilibrium beliefs that are ruled out by these refinements. Email Contact: brandts@cc.uab.es

Cason, Timothy N. (1995) “Cheap Talk Price Signaling in Laboratory Markets,” Information Economics and Policy, 7:2 (June), 183-204. Keywords: experiments, markets, cheap talk. Email Contact: cason@mgmt.purdue.edu

Cason, Timothy N. (1999) “Price Signaling and `Cheap Talk' in Laboratory Posted Offer Markets,” in The Handbook of Experimental Economics Results, edited by C. Plott and V. Smith, Amsterdam: Elsevier Press, forthcoming. Keywords: experiments, markets, posted offer, price signaling, cheap talk. Email Contact: cason@mgmt.purdue.edu

Cason, Timothy N., and Douglas D. Davis (1995) “Price Communications in a Multi-Market Context: An Experimental Investigation,” Review of Industrial Organization, 10769-787. Keywords: experiments, markets, multiple markets, communication, price signaling. Email Contact: cason@mgmt.purdue.edu

Cason, Timothy N., and Lata Gangadharan (1999) “Environmental Labeling and Incomplete Consumer Information in Laboratory Markets,” Purdue University, Discussion Paper, presented at the Summer 1999 ESA Meeting. Keywords: experiments, markets, externalities, environmental economics. Abstract: Producers in a laboratory posted offer market choose a level of environmental quality for the goods they sell. This quality is valued by consumers but cannot be observed by prior to purchase. The informational asymmetry results in inefficiently low levels of environmental quality that is only imperfectly corrected by reputations and signaling. Email Contact: cason@mgmt.purdue.edu

Cooper, David J., Susan Garvin, and John H. Kagel (1997) “Signalling and Adaptive Learning in an Entry Limit Pricing Game,” RAND Journal of Economics, 28:4 (Winter), 662-683. Keywords: experiments, game theory, signalling games, limit pricing, signaling, adaptive learning. Email Contact: djc13@guinness.som.cwru.edu

Cooper, David J., John H. Kagel, Wei Lo, and Qing Liang Gu (1999) “Gaming Against Managers in Incentive Systems: Experimental Results with Chinese Students and Chinese Managers,” American Economic Review, 89:4 (September), 781-804. Keywords: experiments, game theory, signalling games, strategic behavior, subject pool effects, incentive effects, context effects, methodology. Abstract: Students and managers in China are used as subjects in strategic incentive games with asymmetric information, under varying incentive and context conditions. Play converges only incompletely to a pooling equilibrium, although large increases in financial incentives produce more strategic play. Email Contact: djc13@guinness.som.cwru.edu

Dale, Donald J., and John Morgan (1999) “Signaling and the Private Provision of Public Goods,” Princeton University, Discussion Paper, presented at the Summer 1999 ESA Meetings. Keywords: experiments, public, voluntary contributions, psychological game theory, fairness. Email Contact: dale@princeton.edu

Duffy, John, and Nick Feltovich (1999) “Words, Deeds, and Lies,” University of Houston, Discussion Paper, presented at the Fall 1999 European Regional ESA Meeting. Keywords: experiments, game theory, coordination, matrix games, cheap talk, reputations. Abstract: Subjects are randomly matched in 2x2 coordination games, and the subject designated as a "sender" sends a message about intended play, which is read by the "receiver" prior to the point at which both make their decisions. Messages are more effective in the treatment where the receiver also sees that sender's message/action decisions from the most recent matching, as compared with a baseline treatment where only the sender's previous action is revealed. Email Contact: nfelt@bayou.uh.edu

Eckel, Catherine C., and Rick K. Wilson (1998) “Social Signaling: Facial Expressions as Nonverbal Cheap-Talk in Simple Bargaining Games,” Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Discussion Paper, presented at the Fall 1998 ESA Meetings. Keywords: experiments, bargaining, facial expressions, psychology, social signaling. Email Contact: eckelc@vt.edu

Eckel, Catherine C., and Rick K. Wilson (1999) “Reciprocal Fairness and Social Signaling: Experiments with Limited Reputations,” Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Discussion Paper, presented at the 1999 ASSA Meetings. Keywords: experiments, bargaining, fairness, signaling. Email Contact: eckelc@vt.edu

Goeree, Jacob K., and Charles A. Holt (1999) “Ten Little Treasures of Game Theory, and Ten Intuitive Contradictions,” University of Virginia, Discussion Paper. Keywords: experiments, game theory, bargaining, matching pennies, traveler's dilemma, coordination, Kreps game, auctions, signaling, extensive form games, backward induction, Nash equilibrium, logit equilibrium, introspection, one shot games. Abstract: The "treasures" are ten static and dynamic games where behavior matches the Nash equilibrium or relevant refinement, and the contradictions are variations of the same game that produces anomalous behavior patterns. In some games, Nash seems to work only by coincidence, e.g. if deviation losses are symmetric or very high. In other games the data are repelled from the Nash prediction and pile up on the opposite side of the set of feasible decisions. Email Contact: jg2n@virginia.edu

Hoggatt, Austin C., James W. Friedman, and Shlomo Gill (1976) “Price Signaling in Experimental Oligopoly,” American Economic Review, 66:2 (May), 261-266. Keywords: experiments, markets, oligopoly, cooperation, price signaling.

Levati, Maria Vittoria (1998) “An Experimental Study on the Role Played by 'Persuasive Behavior' in Public Good Experiments,” University of York, Discussion Paper, presented at the Summer 1998 ESA Meetings. Keywords: experiments, public, voluntary contributions, persuasion, fairness, signaling. Abstract: Subjects may contribute to a public good in an effort to persuade or signal others to do so in the future. The reported experiment provides support for the persuasion hypothesis. Email Contact: mvl2@york.ac.uk

Miller, Ross M., and Charles R. Plott (1985) “Product Quality Signaling in Experimental Markets,” Econometrica, 53:4 (July), 837-872. Keywords: experiments, markets, quality, signaling, information.

Peterson, Steven P. (1996) “Some Experimental Evidence on the Efficiency of Dividend Signaling in Resolving Information Asymmetries,” Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 29:3 (May), 373-388. Keywords: experiments, markets, asset markets, dividend signaling, asymmetric information.

Potters, Jan, and Frans van Winden (1996) “Comparative Statics of a Signaling Game: An Experimental Study,” International Journal of Game Theory, 25:3 329-353. Keywords: experiments, information, signaling, game theory. Email Contact: j.j.m.potters@kub.nl

Sherstyuk, Katerina (1999) “Collusion Without Conspiracy: An Experimental Study of One-Sided Auctions,” Experimental Economics, 2:1 59-75. Keywords: experiments, markets, tacit collusion, strict improvement rule, comparison of institutions, one-sided auctions, oral auction, sealed bid auction, trigger price strategies. Abstract: The experiment yields competitive outcomes for a sealed bid auction and tacitly collusive outcomes for an oral ascending bid auction with no strict bid improvement rule. The conclusion is that improperly designed oral auctions may facilitate the trust and signaling needed to establish tacit collusion.