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Seeing what can(not) be seen: Confirmation bias, employment dynamics and climate change

Alessia Cafferata, Marwil Dávila-Fernández and Serena Sordi ()

Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 2021, vol. 189, issue C, 567-586

Abstract: Psychologists among other behavioural scientists refer to the tendency of favouring, interpreting, and searching for information that supports one’s prior beliefs as confirmation bias. Given the relevance of the topic to the field, we develop a small-scale agent-based model in discrete-time to investigate how employment conditions affect attitudes towards climate policies under such a cognitive bias. Our narrative resembles the so-called discrete-choice approach. It is assumed that the respective probability functions respond to variations in the employment rate. Persistent endogenous fluctuations might emerge via a super-critical Neimark-Sacker bifurcation. Furthermore, depending on the strength of agents’ response to the collective opinion, we might have coexistence of periodic attractors as a representation of path dependence. In terms of policy implications, we highlight that the adoption of a successful green-agenda depends on the ability of policy-makers to take advantage of favourable conditions in the labour market while appealing to different framing strategies.

Keywords: Climate change; Confirmation bias; Sentiment dynamics; Group effect; Adaptive learning (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D91 E71 O44 Q56 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2021.07.004

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Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization is currently edited by Houser, D. and Puzzello, D.

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