EXEC is one of the oldest centres for experimental economics in the world, and has been active since 1988 when it was founded by John Hey and Graham Loomes. For a while EXEC was directed by Miguel Costa-Gomes. John Hey has now returned as full-time Director.
In the years since EXEC was founded, experimental economics has grown into a respected and well-established methodology, used by many thousands of economists throughout the world. In essence the methodology involves testing economic theories using data generated from laboratory experiments - exactly as in the physical sciences. Recently field experiments too have become increasingly important. EXEC has contributed to this development, carrying out a variety of experiments, investigating theories of individual behaviour, of behaviour in games, and behaviour in markets.