Motivated Beliefs about Climate Change

Last registered on July 12, 2021

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
Motivated Beliefs about Climate Change
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0007698
Initial registration date
July 11, 2021
Last updated
July 12, 2021, 11:50 AM EDT

Locations

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Primary Investigator

Affiliation
Lund University

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
WZB Berlin
PI Affiliation
MCC Berlin
PI Affiliation
MCC Berlin

Additional Trial Information

Status
In development
Start date
2021-07-12
End date
2022-06-27
Secondary IDs
Abstract
We study the role of motivated beliefs in climate change using an online laboratory experiment. Participants in our experiment work on a real effort task and decide between two production technologies. The payments for the technologies depend on a state of nature that is unknown to participants but can be estimated based on a subjective text that discusses climate change. We test whether participants form motivated beliefs about the state of nature when doing so is in their financial interest. We also test whether motivated beliefs impact actions, and whether removing the role of motivated beliefs makes people choose technologies in a more altruistic way.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Jakob, Michael et al. 2021. "Motivated Beliefs about Climate Change." AEA RCT Registry. July 12. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.7698-1.0
Sponsors & Partners

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Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
Intervention Start Date
2021-07-12
Intervention End Date
2021-07-16

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
1) The technology chosen by participant 1
2) The elicited belief of participant 1
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
1) The technology chosen by participant 2
2) The elicited belief of participant 2
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
Participants in the experiment work on a real-effort slider task for 6 minutes in groups of 2 (participant 1 and participant 2). Payment on the task depends on (a) the production technology and (b) the state of nature. There are two treatments that vary which participant (1 or 2) gets to make the technology choice. This participant makes four technology choices when either (a) the state of nature is totally unknown, (b) the probability for each state is known, but not the state itself, (c) the "bad" state is selected for sure and (d) the "good" state is selected for sure. Prior to making these decisions, both participants are also asked to estimate the probability of each of the two states of nature based on reading a text on the potential for new technologies to help mitigate climate change. The experiment also includes a questionnaire that collects demographic information and asks participants about their reasoning for making their decisions.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Randomization done by the lab manager
Randomization Unit
Experimental session
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
400 participants
Sample size: planned number of observations
400 participants
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
200 participants (100 of type 1, 100 of type 2) per treatment.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
See the pre-analysis plan.
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
WZB Ethics Review Board
IRB Approval Date
2020-11-26
IRB Approval Number
2020/3/97
Analysis Plan

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