WULABS Small Project Grants
The WU Competence Center for Experimental Research provides Small Project Grants for experimental projects of PhD students or academics from all departments and institutes. The purpose of these grants is to
financially support PhD students (PhD/Doktorat) and Praedoc assistants from all departments and institutes at WU to conduct experimental projects in cases where the student’s supervisor cannot directly provide funding; and
fund pilot projects run by WU academic staff members (Post docs and Faculty) if further grant applications are planned in the case of successful pilot projects.
2020 Call for Proposals
The WULABS Small Projects Grants will provide up to 2000 € per project to successful applicants. The awarded amount is primarily intended to cover experimental subjects’ payments. Applications must use the respective application form, which asks for a description of your research project, focusing on the following points:
Project background and motivation
Research methods and experimental design
Data analysis strategy
Applications will be reviewed by a committee consisting of the members of the WU Competence Center for Experimental Research: Prof. Dr. Ben Greiner, Prof. Dr. Bernadette Kamleitner, and Prof. Dr. Rupert Sausgruber.
Awards are subject to the conditions listed below.
The application deadline is July 19, 2020. Grants awarded in this round will have to be spent by the end of the year 2020.
If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Miloš Fišar (email@example.com).
- WULABS_Small_Project_Grants_Call_for_Proposals.pdf (pdf, 189 KB)
- WULABS_SPG_application_form.docx (docx, 63 KB)
2018 Call for Proposals
13 sucessful grants were awarded in the first round of WULABSSmall Project Grants.
The effect of psychic distance on the internal capital allocation to subsidiaries’ proposalsJelena Cerar
This paper presents a direct experimental test of the effect of psychic distance in the capital allocation process in subsidiaries’ proposals. The concept of psychic distance is used as an individual’s impression of the differences between the home country and the foreign country.
I test the effect of headquarters managers’ perception of psychic distance towards the country of origin of the proposal on making the investment in a proposed subsidiary project. I additionally test how the risk profile of both headquarters managers and the subsidiaries’ proposals modify the effect of psychic distance on the headquarters’ capital allocation to subsidiaries’ project. In order to test the treatment effect, namely the information where the proposal comes from, I check the difference in the invested amount between a treatment group and a control group.
Black is in fashion: The role of ethnicity in the formation of overcorrection towards Blacks in the context of prosocial buying behaviourKatharina Dinhof
If people experience prejudice towards out-group members, it can be observed that not only more negative behaviour occurs but also that some individuals show extraordinary positive behaviour: This overcorrecting behaviour (very positive controlled behaviour) in the decision to buy from a black street vendor is investigated in this research project.
Measured in an experimental between-subject design, the study treated ethnicity of the street vendors (Whites vs. Blacks) and cognitive load (high vs. low) as independent variables and the prosocial buying decision as the dependent variable. This results in four experimental conditions. The level of prejudice and the motivation to control one’s prejudice is hypothesized to moderate the relationship between ethnicity and cognitive load and the decision to buy. We argue, that participants with low bias show the highest overcorrection because they are not experiencing cognitive depletion due to intergroup stress and can regulate their behaviours. We also examine whether differences appear in the decision to buy if cognitive load is induced to restrain cognitive resources or not.
Guard your money! A corruption game with two simultaneous actors under strategic uncertaintySiegfred Eisenberg, Martin Hulényi and Alexander Schnabl
This study compares the impact of changing a sequential bribery game to a simultaneous bribery game and if rewards regarding whistleblowing and auditing by an inspector have significantly different effects in both games. The bribery game literature offers a broad view about the effects of different sequential bribery games and anti-corruption policies. However, there is a lack of bribery games with two persons who have the possibility to initiate a bribe between themselves at the same time, what is a case that usually happens in real life situations. Hence, the relevance of the simultaneous scenario might strengthen the evidence in improving the environment for whistleblowers.
The effect of feeling trusted on ambidextrous decision-makingJohanna Grünauer and Diya Elizabeth Abraham
Research on organizational ambidexterity (i.e. how organizations balance the contradictory requirements of flexibility and efficiency) acknowledges the important role of key decision makers and the impact of managerial actions on organizational ambidexterity. Despite this, research on the microfoundations of ambidexterity and the factors that shape individual exploration (search for new knowledge) and exploitation (use of existing knowledge) is still in its infancy. Our experiment contributes to the literature by exploring the effects of one particular factor, namely ‘feeling trusted’, on individual exploration/ exploitation. Additionally, since exploration is associated with taking on greater risk and since we manipulate ‘felt trust’ by having participants make decisions with money that has been entrusted to them by another participant, we also aim to distinguish the effects of ‘felt trust’ on exploration from the effects of simply increased risk-aversive behavior when taking decisions on behalf of others.
Using impact communication and social media to increase donor retention and new donorPascal Güntürkün
Many charities are nowadays struggling with declining donor acquisition and retention rates, thus making it necessary to identify new ways to better attract and retain donors (Nonprofit Business Advisor 2015). This research project aims to investigate whether informing donors about the specific usage of their donation (specific impact communication) has the potential to improve retentions rates and drive positive word of mouth in private and public social media channels. This research further aims to shed light on the underlying psychological mechanisms that drive these behaviors and identify individual donor characteristics that may serve as contingency factors. The insights on the specific impact communication generated in this pilot study will provide the foundation for two subsequent field experiments which will be conducted in collaboration with two major Austrian charities.
Gender-Biased Perceptions in Non-Cognitive SkillsSimone Häckl
We aim to contribute to the literature on non-cognitive skills, which have been shown to be important determinants of economic success, but are still relatively understudied compared to cognitive skills. We will do so by investigating (perceived) gender differences in grit and by introducing a novel behavioral measure thereof, which is easily implementable in the laboratory and suitable for adults. Most importantly, we will build on these insights to investigate the impact of perceived gender differences regarding non-cognitive skills on employment decisions, which has not yet been explored in economics, despite the fact that there still exists a substantial gender wage gap that cannot be explained.
Predictive Processing-based Theory of Needs Satisfaction: An Empirical InvestigationSoheil Human
Needs satisfaction plays a fundamental role in human well-being. Due to the importance of needs satisfaction, several need theories have been developed in humanities and social sciences. Most of the conducted research on human needs, however, have been dedicated to development of different categories or lists of needs, and new advancements in cognitive science have not been considered in them. In our recent paper (Human, Bidabadi et al., 2018 forthcoming), we reflected on the concepts of need and needs satisfaction from an enactive perspective. Specifically, we took a first step towards development of a theory of needs satisfaction in Predictive Processing (PP) agents. In the proposed research, we aim to test and evaluate our theory by conducting an empirical experiment.
The sore losers of crowdsourcingTatiana Karpukhina
The boom of crowdsourcing is at its peak in the last few years: benefits for companies and customers are plenty. Current research seeks to explore the downside of crowdsourcing, by focusing on customers who participated in crowdsourcing initiative and lost. It is important to explore the negative side of crowdsourcing, establish the degree of negative consequences and find a way to mitigate them, while still retaining its benefits.
Think, tell, act: Social desirability bias in tax compliance researchTom Kisters and Maximilian Zieser
How much trust can be put into survey questions and experiments about tax compliance, if social desirability influences responses and behavior? Depending on the social situation, there may be a pronounced discrepancy between what people think, what they tell, and how they act in a research environment. However, social influence cannot only be seen as an obstacle in research, but also as an actual determinant of tax compliance. With a multi-method approach, using a version of the Implicit Association Test (ID-EAST), commonly used survey items, and a public good experiment, we aim to shed light on the social desirability bias in tax compliance research and on the mechanisms by which social and personal norms influence tax compliance behavior. Knowledge about the social desirability bias is of vital importance, as a majority of research on tax compliance uses surveys and computer experiments.
Playing the lottery instead of investing in a greater good of the sharing economy? – The role of regulationSarah Marth
Within the sharing economy, consumers no longer own a good, but temporarily have access to this good. When these consumers use resources provided by others, they are individually better off when they make use of the shared resources without contributing in return, harming the community (e.g., harvesting fruits in a community garden without taking care of the plants). Sharing economy can, therefore, be presented as a real-life social dilemma in which individual interests contradict the community’s interests. In the current research, I will investigate the impact of regulation in the sharing economy. Further, I will examine whether including or omitting regulation measures affects engagement in sharing economy, focusing on sharing economy communities. To these ends, I will conduct a laboratory experiment to test whether consumers engage in sharing economy actions depending on prevailing regulation mechanisms.
Marth, Sarah, Sabitzer, Thomas, Hofmann, Eva, Hartl, Barbara, & Penz, Elfriede. (in press). The Influence of Regulation on Trust and Risk Preference in Sharing Communities. Frontiers in Psychology, 11, 1369. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2020.01369
A blast from the past: the impact of storytelling on access-based-consumptionFabian Nindl
If there was a soccer-shoe at an auction that had been worn by Christiano Ronaldo, it will fetch a price far higher than the fabric it is made of due to the history of the item. Modern technology, lets companies which engage in access-based-consumption trace the history of items. What if the shoe you could rent, had been worn during a game of the current World Cup? Suddenly, it becomes more attractive – not just the shoe series, but this shoe. Human beings are drawn to and connect with stories. An industry, which has completely neglected the art of storytelling, is the access economy. Building on Dan Ariely’s (2009) “The Significant Object Project”, this research tries to make a strong case for storytelling (i.e. wrapping the history of a product in a compelling story) in access-based-consumption and introduces attitude as a mediator and need for ownership as a moderator of the effect.
Accountable information systems: reducing user bias through systematic feedbackBen Wagner
Everybody is used to receiving incorrect journey estimates from software like Google Maps. Despite this everyone still uses this software. From a user’s perspective, it is often difficult to know how certain decisions are made by information systems and how to systematically hold those systems accountable for the biases within them. In particular, the cognitive load that this puts on users to systematically understand and critically analyze computing systems is not a realistic expectation. Based on user experiments we will show that even when users intuitively know better the recommendations of their software, their decisions are still biased by the recommendations of the software. As a result, we propose to develop a Software Accountability Mechanism (SAM) which helps users remember the claims made by different apps and help users verify the veracity of these claims. In order to demonstrate the effectiveness of the SAM system, we will test a prototype version of this SAM experimentally in the summer of 2018.