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This paper develops a semiotic-inferential model of verbal communication for incomplete information games: a language is seen as a set of conventional signs that point to types, and the credibility of a message depends on the strategic context. Formally, there is an encoding-decoding step where the receiver can understand the sender’s message if and only if a common language is used, and an inferential step where the receiver may either trust the message’s literal meaning or disregard it when updating priors. The epistemic requirement that information be transmitted through the literal meaning of the message uttered leads to an equilibrium concept distinct from a Perfect Bayesian Equilibrium, ruling out informative equilibria where language is not used in its ordinary sense. The paper also proposes a refinement by which the sender selects among equilibria if all sender types are willing to play the same equilibrium.
This paper expands the micro-foundations of the traditional greed and grievance non-cooperative model of civil conflict between a government and a rebel group.First, the paper’s model allows for greed and grievance to be orthogonal, so that they may affect each other. Second, the model allows for the reaction curves of both parties in non-cooperative games to be substitutes and not inevitably co ... (View publication)
This paper estimates the effect of voting eligibility on civic engagement measured along three dimensions: political motivation, political activities, and political knowledge. These outcomes originate in the AmericasBarometer 2004-2016 surveys of eligible voters. To identify the effects the paper exploits variation in field survey dates relative to election dates, given country-specific voting ... (View publication)
This paper designs and implements a field experiment that provides students from less advantaged backgrounds with individualized feedback on academic performance during the transition from middle to high school. The intervention reduces the gap between expected and actual performance, as well as shrinks the variance of individual ability distributions. Guided by a simple Bayesian model, the p ... (View publication)
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