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One fo­cus of the in­sti­tute is how mar­ket rules shape the stra­tegic be­ha­vior of firms and in­di­vidu­als. The rise of the In­ter­net brought about new kinds of (on­line) mar­kets, which did not evolve over a long time, but are pur­pose­fully designed. That is, the rules of these mar­kets did not develop in an evolu­tion­ary way, but were writ­ten by the cre­ator of the mar­ket, and can be changed just as eas­ily. Mar­ket Design is a re­l­at­ively young field, en­ga­ging re­search­ers from eco­nom­ics, busi­ness ad­min­is­tra­tion, polit­ical sciences, so­ci­ology and psy­cho­logy.

The main idea is to use the range of em­pir­ical and game-­the­or­et­ical tools not only to un­der­stand the work­ings of mar­kets (as well as in­sti­tu­tions and or­gan­iz­a­tions), but also to cre­ate, design, and im­prove them. Thus, in our re­search we do not only con­sider how mar­ket rules shape strategy, but also how to stra­tegic­ally design mar­ket rules. The even­tual goal of all this en­deavor is to align in­di­vidual and firm in­cent­ives and be­ha­vior with the goals of the rule-­maker (in most cases: the mar­ket place, but also gov­ern­ments, em­ploy­ers, or so­ci­ety in gen­eral).

The re­search at the in­sti­tute draws on a broad range of meth­ods: (game-) the­or­et­ical         mod­el­ing and ana­lysis, struc­tural mod­el­ing, com­pu­ta­tion and sim­u­la­tion, lab­or­at­ory and field ex­per­i­ment­a­tion, as well as field data ana­lysis. The idea be­hind this is that if a num­ber of dif­fer­ent meth­od­o­lo­gical ap­proaches sug­gest co­her­ent con­clu­sions with re­spect to a re­search ques­tion, we can be much more con­fid­ent in our re­com­mend­a­tions regard­ing strategy and policy im­ple­ment­a­tion. Even­tu­ally, only by af­fect­ing stra­tegic real-­world mar­ket be­ha­vior in a sys­tem­atic way we can prove that we really un­der­stood the prin­ciples that gov­ern eco­nomic and so­cial in­ter­ac­tions.

Re­cent ex­em­plary re­search pro­jects and fields

Mar­ket design and feed­back sys­tem design

Bolton, Gary, Greiner, Ben, Ock­en­fels, Axel. 2017. Dis­pute Res­ol­u­tion or Es­cal­a­tion? The Stra­tegic Gam­ing of Feed­back With­drawal Op­tions in On­line Mar­kets. Man­age­ment Science (MS) 

Greiner, Ben, Zhang, Le, Tang, Chengxi­ang. 2017. Sep­ar­a­tion of pre­scrip­tion and treat­ment in health care mar­kets: A lab­or­at­ory ex­per­i­ment. Health Eco­nom­ics 26 (S3), 21-35.

Re­gina Betz, Ben Greiner, Sascha Sch­weitzer, and Stefan Seifert. Auc­tion Format and Auc­tion Sequence in Mul­ti-Item Mul­ti-Unit Auc­tions - An ex­per­i­mental study. Eco­nomic Journal, 127 (605), 351-371

En­gin­eer­ing Trust - Re­cipro­city in the Pro­duc­tion of Repu­ta­tion In­form­a­tion. Man­age­ment Science, 59(2), 2013, 265-285 (with Gary Bolton and Axel Ock­en­fels). 

Ben Greiner, Axel Ock­en­fels, and Karim Sad­rieh (2012). In­ter­net Auc­tions. In: M. Peitz and J. Wald­fo­gel (eds.), The Ox­ford Hand­book of the Di­gital Economy, Ox­ford Uni­versity Press, pp. 306-342.

Group de­cisions, vot­ing, and in­sti­tu­tional design

Gigi Foster, Paul Frijters, and Ben Greiner (2017). Chal­lenges for Mar­ket and In­sti­tu­tional Design when Coun­ter­ing Ex­ploit­a­tion Strategies. In: L-A. Gir­aldeau, P. Heeb, and M. Kos­feld (eds.): In­vestors and Ex­ploiters in Eco­logy and Eco­nom­ics: Prin­ciples and Ap­plic­a­tions. Strüng­mann Forum Re­ports, vol. 21 (J. Lupp, ser­ies ed­itor), MIT Press.

Am­brus, At­tila, Greiner, Ben, Sastro, Anne. 2017. The Case for Nil Votes: Voter Be­ha­vior un­der Asym­met­ric In­form­a­tion in Com­puls­ory and Vol­un­tary Vot­ing Sys­tems. Journal of Pub­lic Eco­nom­ics 154, 34-48.

At­tila Am­brus and Ben Greiner (2016). Demo­cratic pun­ish­ment in pub­lic good games with per­fect and im­per­fect ob­serv­ab­il­ity. Work­ing Pa­per.

At­tila Am­brus, Ben Greiner, and Parag Pathak (2015). How in­di­vidual pref­er­ences are ag­greg­ated in groups: An ex­per­i­mental study. Journal of Pub­lic Eco­nom­ics, 129, 1-13.

At­tila Am­brus and Ben Greiner (2012). Im­per­fect pub­lic mon­it­or­ing with costly pun­ish­ment - An ex­per­i­mental study. Amer­ican Eco­nomic Re­view 102(7), 3317-32.

Ben Greiner, Axel Ock­en­fels, and Peter Werner (2012). The Dy­namic In­ter­play of Inequal­ity and Trust - An Ex­per­i­mental Study. Journal of Eco­nomic Be­ha­vior and Or­gan­iz­a­tion 81, 355-365.

So­cial pref­er­ences, re­cipro­city and bar­gain­ing

Redzo Muj­cic, Andrew J. Oswald, Is envy harm­ful to a so­ci­ety's psy­cho­lo­gical health and well­being? A lon­git­ud­inal study of 18,000 adults, So­cial Science & Medi­cine, Volume 198, Feb 2018, Pages 103-111

Muj­cic, Redzo, Leib­brandt, Andreas. 2017. In­dir­ect Re­cipro­city and Proso­cial Be­ha­vi­our: Evid­ence from a Nat­ural Field Ex­per­i­ment. Eco­nomic Journal

Roth, Ju­lia, Fortmüller, Richard, Pow­ell, Owen. 2017. Can teach­ing so­cial di­lem­mas make people more proso­cial? An ex­per­i­ment. Journal of Edu­ca­tion for Busi­ness 92 (1), 16-22.

Ben Greiner (2016). Stra­tegic Un­cer­tainty Aver­sion in Bar­gain­ing. Work­ing Pa­per.


Ben Greiner, Mary Cara­vella, and Alvin Roth (2014). Is Avatar-to-Avatar Com­mu­nic­a­tion As Ef­fect­ive As Face-to-­Face Com­mu­nic­a­tion? An Ul­timatum Game Ex­per­i­ment in First and Second Life. Journal of Eco­nomic Be­ha­vior and Or­gan­iz­a­tion, 108, 374-382.


Ben Greiner, Werner Güth, and Ro'i Zultan (2012). So­cial Com­mu­nic­a­tion and Dis­crim­in­a­tion - A Video Ex­per­i­ment. Ex­per­i­mental Eco­nom­ics 15(3), 398-417. 


Ex­per­i­mental Meth­od­o­logy

Chris­toph March, Anthony Ziegel­meyer, Ben Greiner, and René Cyranek (2016).  Mon­et­ary In­cent­ives in Large-S­cale Ex­per­i­ments: A Case Study of Risk Aver­sion. Work­ing Pa­per.

Ben Greiner (2015). Sub­ject Pool Re­cruit­ment Pro­ced­ures: Or­gan­iz­ing Ex­per­i­ments with ORSEE. Journal of the Eco­nomic Science As­so­ci­ation, 1(1), 114-125. 

Ido Erev and Ben Greiner (2015). The 1-800 cri­tique, coun­ter­-examples, and the fu­ture of be­ha­vi­oral eco­nom­ics. In: G. Frechette and A. Schot­ter (eds.): The Meth­ods of Mod­ern Ex­per­i­mental Eco­nom­ics, Ox­ford Uni­versity Press, pp. 151-165.