Behavioral economic approaches towards irrationality and manipulation

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Clemens Jäger
228 g
208x146x12 mm
An economic model in general has the aim to describe and explain how a specific part of the economy works. Inspired by this aim, the overall objective of this thesis is to incorporate the seemingly irrational behavior of human beings into neoclassical economic models. The resulting economic model is supposed to build on more realistic assumptions and be able to display behavioral phenomena connected to seemingly irrational behavior, which are ignored in neoclassical economic models up to now. In order to reach this objective, it is necessary to determine whether and to what extend humans are irrational and what consequences that might entail. In this context it is also important to evaluate how easy, to what extent and through which means human beings are manipulable. Therefore, in order to be able reach the overall objective, these features of human behavior will be examined from a behavioral economical perspective.

The findings of behavioral economics and psychology will be incorporated into neoclassical economic models, in particular in the utility function with and without uncertainty and in the discounted utility model for intertemporal choices, in order to advance these models. The basic goal of this thesis is not to develop a model that is easily applicable and can be put into practice right away. Instead, the overall objective is to illustrate the extent of influence the incorporation of such phenomena in economic models might have. More realistic assumption and a model providing a comprehensive overview over the current state of research are aimed at.

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