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Game form recognition in preference elicitation, cognitive abilities and cognitive load

Drichoutis, Andreas and Nayga, Rodolfo (2019): Game form recognition in preference elicitation, cognitive abilities and cognitive load.

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Abstract

This study further examines the failure of game form recognition in preference elicitation (Cason and Plott, 2014) by making elicitation more cognitively demanding through a cognitive load manipulation. We hypothesized that if subjects misperceive one game for another game, then by depleting their cognitive resources, subjects would misconceive the more-cognitively demanding task for the less-cognitively demanding task at a higher rate. We find no evidence that subjects suffer from a first-price-auction game-form misconception but rather that once cognitive resources are depleted, subjects' choices are better explained by random choice. More cognitively able subjects are more immune to deviations from sub-optimal play than lower cognitively able subjects.

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