"From these things therefore it is clear that the city-state is a natural growth, and that man is by nature a political animal, and a man that is by nature and not merely by fortune citiless is either low in the scale of humanity or above it."
Welcome to my website. My main field of interest is political economy, with a mix of applied economic theory and experimental economics as secondary. I am particularly interested in the topics of populism and economic advice and their implications for the quality of public debate.
Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in Economics
Latest Working Paper
In a set of preregistered experiments with general population, participants receive recommended answers to an economics questionnaire by two computerized advisors. One advisor is of high-accuracy (`the Expert') and recommends the answers produced by academic consensus. The other advisor is of low accuracy (`the Populist'), and recommends the modal answers of participants from a pilot study. Participants do not know who the Expert is, and have to judge this from the recommendations. We examine which advisor participants identify as the Expert via revealed preference, i.e. participants select an advisor to answer the questionnaire on their behalf. We call this the `identify the Expert' problem. Our participants overwhelmingly choose the Populist, even when fully informed about the modus operandi of the two advisors. Bayesian models fail to explain these choices, even in the degenerate case where participants should be able to identify the Expert with 100% accuracy. Overconfidence in one's ability only partly accounts for advisor choice, while ego-involvement cannot explain behavior.
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