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Counter Intuitive Learning: An Exploratory Study

Nobuyuki Hanaki (), Alan Kirman () and Paul Pezanis-Christou ()

No 2016-12, School of Economics Working Papers from University of Adelaide, School of Economics

Abstract: The literature on learning in unknown environments emphasises reinforcing on actions which produce positive results. But, in some cases, success requires shifting from a currently successful actions to others. We examine, experimentally and theoretically in a very simple framework, how individuals initially learn by exploiting information from the pay-offs of actions taken but also from exploring new actions. We analyse if and how they learn that pay-offs are inter-temporally dependent. We then ran the same experiments but where individuals could observe the actions taken or the pay-offs obtained by others or both. Such observations improved pay-offs if one of the pair had learned to obtain the maximum pay-off.

Keywords: multi-armed bandit; reinforcement learning; eureka moment; pay-off patterns; observational learning (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D81 D83 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe
Date: 2016-07
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Working Paper: Counter Intuitive Learning: An Exploratory Study (2016) Downloads
Working Paper: Counter intuitive learning: An exploratory study (2016) Downloads
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