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Strategic Thinking in Contests

David Bruner, Caleb Cox, David McEvoy () and Brock Stoddard ()

No 19-08, Working Papers from Department of Economics, Appalachian State University

Abstract: We examine motives for over-bidding in contests using both individual and team contests. In team contests, subject pairs send suggested bids and messages to their teammates. Content analysis of the messages provides insight into an individual’s bidding motives. In addition, we elicit measures of preferences, beliefs, and impulsiveness. We ?nd that beliefs about others’ bids and messages that emphasize winning (i.e., utility of winning) are the most robust predictors of over-bidding. Our results suggest that analyzing communication provides a rich window into an individual’s thought process when making decisions, and can complement insights from elicited values from common decision tasks. Key Words: Tullock contest, lottery contest, winner-take-all, two-headed contest, team contest, strategic thinking, communication, overbidding

JEL-codes: C92 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-exp, nep-mic and nep-upt
Date: 2019
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