SEMINAR: Discretionary Choice, Motivation, and the SUTVA

This event has now finished.
  • Date and time: Wednesday 24 May 2023, 1pm to 2pm
  • Location: In-person only
    A/D271 (above Alcuin Porters Lodge)
  • Audience: Open to staff, students
  • Admission: Free admission, booking not required

Event details

About the speaker: Gilles Chemla (Imperial)

Abstract: We illustrate how an agentís motivation changes as one moves from RCTs to settings with discretionary choice. A distinguishing characteristic of discretion is due diligence. Before making consequential choices, agents acquire information (signals). This alters motivation, with due diligence putting self-esteem at risk: Outcomes consistent with due diligence signals suggest high decision-making ability. Self-esteem risk exposure is valuable since learning about decision-making ability improves future decision-making. This increases motivation for undertaking future actions that are informative about due diligence quality. Under random assignment without due diligence: nothing is revealed about decision-making ability; the self-esteem component of motivation is absent; and SUTVA is violated. Thus, RCTs may have limited portability. Nevertheless, RCTs with high treatment probabilities, and/or selective trials with small reassignment probabilities, can increase due diligence incentives, improving portability.

Joint with: Christopher A Hennessy (LBS)

Host: Kostas Koufopolous

PaperDiscretionary Choice, Motivation, and the SUTVA