Peer Effects In Economic Attitudes

When:
February 17, 2012 @ 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm America/New York Timezone
2012-02-17T14:00:00-05:00
2012-02-17T15:30:00-05:00
Where:
CEAR
Georgia State University
35 Broad Street Northwest, Atlanta, GA 30303
USA
Cost:
Free
Contact:
CEAR

RCB 1200 – from 2:00 – 3:30

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Recent genetic evidence shows that fundamental economic attitudes, such as risk aversion and altruism, are largely determined by unspecified environmental factors. Using random assignment of MBA students to peer groups and predetermined survey responses of economic attitudes, we provide causal evidence that peer influence is one such environmental factor. We find positive peer effects in risk aversion, consistent with conformity, negative peer effects in honesty and altruism, consistent with self-interest, and no peer effects in trust. Overall, we show that fundamental attitudes, traditionally assumed to be immutable, are, in fact, heavily influenced by social interactions, even in adults.