Theory of mind and strategic decision-making
Last registered on May 10, 2018

Pre-Trial

Trial Information
General Information
Title
Theory of mind and strategic decision-making
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0002903
Initial registration date
May 09, 2018
Last updated
May 10, 2018 4:50 PM EDT
Location(s)
Primary Investigator
Affiliation
University of Warwick
Other Primary Investigator(s)
Additional Trial Information
Status
In development
Start date
2018-05-22
End date
2018-12-31
Secondary IDs
Abstract
The project aims to use experimental evidence to investigate the relationship between personality type, beliefs about others’ type (sometimes called “theory of mind”) and performance in a series of tasks. The tasks include strategic guessing games where subjects need to guess what their partners will do in advance, and games which involve an element of cooperation. Other tasks include demographic questionnaires, IQ tests, and other psychometric tests.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Citation
Sgroi, Daniel. 2018. "Theory of mind and strategic decision-making." AEA RCT Registry. May 10. https://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/2903/history/29367
Experimental Details
Interventions
Intervention(s)
Subjects are paired up and asked to make decisions in one-shot outcome interdependent games, where, depending on the treatment, they may or may not get to communicate with their partner.
Intervention Start Date
2018-05-22
Intervention End Date
2018-12-31
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
The experimental data will allow us to check if personality type correlates with decision-making, as well as whether guesses about the type of others correlates with decision-making. We will see to what extent these matter in different types of game and to what extent our measures of cognitive ability, empathy and reasoning explain both the accuracy of beliefs and the behaviour in the games. We also plan to see if variables constructed from the text used during the games can explain beliefs and behaviour.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Variables constructed from text will include measures such as inward-orientation, valence, concreteness, arousal, dominance and specific word categories.
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
The data will also allow us to check if, while reporting beliefs about their partners, subjects tend to project their own characteristics.
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
The basic design involves asking subjects to take psycho-metric and personality tests. Depending upon the treatment they may then communicate with each other and are asked to report beliefs about their partners before playing strategic games and undertaking a final questionnaire.
Experimental Design Details
The design involves asking subjects to take the Big 5 personality test and a short Raven’s Progressive Matrices test for cognitive ability. Subjects are paired with another subject and then (depending upon the treatment) there may be the opportunity for them to communicate via short text messages or not. Subjects are then asked to guess the personality type and other characteristics of their partners (such as their cognitive ability). Some games are then described (a simple public goods game and a game which requires them to think about the level of reasoning of their partner: a number guessing game in which they are paid based in part on the number guessed by their partner (Arad, A. & Rubinstein, A., 2012)). Subjects are asked to guess the likely strategy of their partner in these games and then proceed to play the games with their partners. This is followed by tests for empathy (for instance, they are shown pictures of eyes and asked whether these reveal particular moods (Baron-Cohen, S., Wheelwright, S., Hill, J., Raste, Y. & Plumb, I., 2001). The sessions end with a test of risk preferences and some basic demographic questions.
Randomization Method
Randomization by computer
Randomization Unit
Randomization is at the level of the experimental session
Was the treatment clustered?
No
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
No clustering.
Sample size: planned number of observations
400 subjects.
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
200 communication, 200 no communication (control)
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB
INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARDS (IRBs)
IRB Name
Internal Department of Economics Approval Process
IRB Approval Date
2018-03-12
IRB Approval Number
N/A
Post-Trial
Post Trial Information
Study Withdrawal
Intervention
Is the intervention completed?
No
Is data collection complete?
Data Publication
Data Publication
Is public data available?
No
Program Files
Program Files
Reports and Papers
Preliminary Reports
Relevant Papers