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2013/2014  KAN-CM_A131  Neuroeconomics

English Title

Course information

Language English
Exam ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Course period Autumn
Changes in course schedule may occur
Tuesday 08.00-10.45, week 36-41, 43-47
Time Table Please see course schedule at e-Campus
Max. participants 60
Study board
Study Board for MSc in Economics and Business Administration
Course coordinator
  • Thomas Ramsøy - Department of Marketing (Marketing)
Administrator: Helle Bunde - hbu.marktg@cbs.dk

This course is part of a minor in Consumer Behaviour and Neuroscience
Main academic disciplines
  • Business psychology
  • Economics, macro economics and managerial economics
Last updated on 03-05-2013
Learning objectives
The learning objectives of this course are that students are able to:

• study the neuroeconomics literature, and acquire basic knowledge about the methods being used
• reflect on the implication of the modern view of the brain on economics, and in particular for specific areas, such as consumer behaviour and finance

In general:
• acquire knowledge about the brain and its role in preference formation and decision making
• select an appropriate case for applying theories and models from the course
• identify relevant theories and models (from brain science and/or economics) to describe and solve a specific case
• structure and analyse data by using adapted theories and models
draw conclusions from this analysis and discuss their implications for economics
Course prerequisites
The course is open to all CBS graduate students. We will assume only a modest degree of mathematical sophistication and rudimentary knowledge of the basics of neuroscience and behavioral decision research. Some background in experimental research methods and passing familiarity with elementary concepts in probability, statistics, and microeconomics will be helpful. We hope that this course will be accessible and useful to students in marketing, management, behavioral economics and finance.
Individual Project:
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual
Size of written product Max. 15 pages
Assignment type Written assignment
Duration 2 weeks to prepare
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period December/January
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Course content and structure

Neuroeconomics is a recently evolved interdisciplinary enterprise at the intersection of psychology, economics, and neuroscience. Its goal is to understand human decision-making in social and economic contexts at a descriptive (functional and brain process) level. The course will offer an introduction into this new and exciting field. Using a combination of mini-lectures on specific topics by the instructors, student-led summaries of assigned readings, and group discussions, we will examine the complementary methodological contributions made by behavioral economics, cognitive psychology, neurophysiology, and neuroimaging. The economic tasks and decisions we will cover int his course include the formation and construction of preference, decisions under risk and uncertainty, intertemporal choice, as well as strategic decisions that require predicting the behavior of others and the role of trust and cooperation in such decisions.

Teaching methods
The course is given in lecture form with cases and classwork, primarily by Dr. Jon Wegener, and Dr. Thomas Ramsøy
Chapters and extra articles will be assigned for reading. Time will be devoted to class discussions and questions regarding these readings.
Further Information
This course is part of the minor in Economics, Psychology and Neuroscience
Expected literature
Indicative literature - may change:
Weber, E. U. & Johnson, E. J. (2009). Mindful judgment and decision making. Annual Review of Psychology,60.
Kahneman, D. (2003). Perspectives on judgment and choice: Mapping bounded rationality. American Psychologist, 58, 697-720.
Gul F, Pesendorfer W. 2005. The case for mindless economics. Working paper, Princeton: Princeton University
Camerer, Loewenstein & Prelec. Neuroeconomics: How neuroscience can inform economics. Journal of Economic Literature 2005, XLIII, 9-64.

Loewenstein G, Rick S, Cohen J. 2007. Neuroeconomics. Annual Review of Psychology 59:1-26

Sejnowski & Churchland. Brain and Cognition. From M. Posner (Ed.), Fundamentals of Cognitive Science. MIT Press.

Fellows, LK. The cognitive neuroscience of human decision making: a review and conceptual framework. Behav Cogn Neurosci Rev. 2004 Sep;3(3):159-72.

Loewenstein, G.F., Weber, E.U., Hsee, C., & Welch, N. (2001). Risk as feelings. Psychological Bulletin, 127, 267-286.

Weber, E. U., Shafir, S., & Blais, A.-R. (2004). Predicting risk-sensitivity in humans and lower animals: Risk as variance or coefficient of variation. Psychological Review, 111, 430-445.
Bechara & Damasio. The somatic marker hypothesis: A neural theory of economic decision. Games and Economic Behavior, 52, 336-372.
Kuhnen & Knutston, The neural basis of financial risk taking. Neuron. 2005 Sep 1;47(5):763-70.
Yechiam et al., Using cognitive models to map relations between neuropsychological disorders and human decision-making deficits. Psychol Sci. 2005 Dec;16(12):973-8.
Camile, N., Coricelli, G., Sallet, J., Pradat-Diehl, P., Duhamel, J-R, & Sirigu, A. (2004). Involvement of the orbitofrontal cortex in the experience of regret. Science, 304, 1167-1170.

Hsu et al., Neural systems responding to degrees of uncertainty in human decision-making. Science. 2005 Dec 9;310(5754):1680-3.

Huettel, et al., Neural signatures of economic preferences for risk and ambiguity. Neuron. 2006 Mar 2;49(5):765-75.

Johnson EJ, Haubl G, Keinan A. 2007. Aspects of endowment: A query theory of value construction. Journal of Experimental Psychology-Learning Memory and Cognition 33:461-74

Tom, S. M., Fox, C. R., Trepel, C., & Poldrack, R. A. (2007). The neural basis of loss aversionin decision-making under risk. Science, 315, 515-518.

Frederick, S., Loewenstein, G., & O'Donoghue, T. (2004). Time discounting and time preference: A critical review. Chapter 1 in G. Loewenstein, D. Read & R.F. Baumeister (Eds.), Time and Decision: Economic and Psychological Perspectives on Intertemporal Choice.

Weber, E. U., Johnson, E. J., Milch, K., Chang, H., Brodscholl, J., & Goldstein, D. (2007). Asymmetric discounting in intertemporal choice: A query theory account. Psychological Science, 18, 516-523.

McClure et al., Separate neural systems value immediate and delayed monetary rewards. Science. 2004 Oct 15;306(5695):503-7.

Kahneman, D., Wakker, P.P. & Sarin, R. (1997). Back to Bentham? Explorations of Experienced Utility. Quarterly Journal of Economics, 112, 375-405.

Schultz, W. Multiple reward signals in the brain. Nat Rev Neurosci. 2000 Dec;1(3):199-207.

Padoa-Schioppa & Assad, Neurons in the orbitofrontal cortex encode economic value.

Nature. 2006 Apr 23

Camerer, C.F. (2005). Behavioral game theory: Predicting human behavior in strategic interactions. Chapter 13 in C.Camerer, G. Loewenstein & M. Rabin (Eds.) Advances in Behavioral Economics. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Camerer, C.F. (2003). Strategizing in the brain. Science, 300, 1673-1675.

Sanfey et al., The neural basis of economic decision-making in the Ultimatum Game. Science. 2003 Jun 13;300(5626):1755-8.

Last updated on 03-05-2013