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Ambiguity as a Determinant of Discounting
Last registered on September 28, 2019

Pre-Trial

Trial Information
General Information
Title
Ambiguity as a Determinant of Discounting
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0004513
Initial registration date
August 16, 2019
Last updated
September 28, 2019 7:06 AM EDT
Location(s)

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Primary Investigator
Affiliation
University of Bonn
Other Primary Investigator(s)
Additional Trial Information
Status
In development
Start date
2019-08-19
End date
2020-06-20
Secondary IDs
Abstract
Decisions with outcomes realizing in the future inherently contain ambiguity. This suggest a natural link between ambiguity and intertemporal behavior. Based on this, I investigate whether ambiguity attitudes shape intertemporal decision-making using a laboratory experiment. A key feature of my design is that I jointly elicit ambiguity attitudes as well as discounting behavior over a consumption good. Importantly, I exogenously vary the timing of receiving the good and, independently, the ambiguity over the utility of consuming the good. This allows me to quantify the change in ambiguity over time and causally measure its impact on discounting behavior.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Citation
Henkel, Luca. 2019. "Ambiguity as a Determinant of Discounting." AEA RCT Registry. September 28. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.4513-2.0.
Sponsors & Partners

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Experimental Details
Interventions
Intervention(s)
Laboratory experiments to study the relationship of ambiguity attitudes and intertemporal behavior.
Intervention Start Date
2019-08-19
Intervention End Date
2020-05-20
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
The study contains three main outcome variables:

1) Index of discounting behavior, which measures subjects discount factor
2) Index of ambiguity aversion, which measures subjects preference over ambiguity
3) Index of the perceived level of ambiguity/ambiguity-generated insensitivity, which measures subjects perception of ambiguity
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
Subjects make choices using choice lists. The use of choice lists allows the identification of the three main behavioral indices, which form the primary outcomes.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
The selection of the payoff-relevant subject will be done by drawing the corresponding cabin number from a deck consisting of the cabin numbers of all subjects participating.

The selection of the payoff-relevant choice of the selected subject will be done computerized.
Randomization Unit
Individual randomization
Was the treatment clustered?
No
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
n/a
Sample size: planned number of observations
Invitations will be send in order to archive a sample size of 264 subjects,
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
264 (within-subject design)
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB
INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARDS (IRBs)
IRB Name
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number