031: Matt Rousu on Experimental Auctions and the Need for Peer-Reviewed Economic Impact Studies.
Dr. Matthew Rousu is a Professor and Warehime Chair in the Department of Economics at Susquehanna University. His main teaching interests include microeconomics, political economic thought, and game theory.
Matt is an expert on experimental auction design and implementation. He uses his expertise on experimental auctions to study problems in agricultural economics, environmental economics, and public health. He has published over 40 scholarly articles, as well as book chapters, non-technical articles and Op-eds.
Matt has been quoted widely on many issues by The Chicago Tribune, Forbes, The NY Daily News, The Philadelphia Inquirer, US News and World Report, The Washington Post, Wikipedia, and Yahoo.com.
He has also been a guest for local radio stations mainly to discuss the local, state, and national economy.
Matt runs his own blog known as paeconomist.blogspot and is founder of the Economic Impact Review. He is the author of Political Trivia.
Matt earned a Bachelor’s degree from the University of South Dakota and a Ph.D. in Economics from Iowa State University.
- the benefits of lecturing at a liberal arts college – switch up your research interests.
- about experimental auctions and their design.
- what is consumer demand for Genetically Modified Products.
- how demand for GMOs change due to differences in packaging.
- how print advertisement for e-cigarettes increases their demand.
- whether e-cigarettes are a ‘healthy’ alternative to traditional cigarettes.
- about the impact of plain package cigarettes on consumer demand.
- if the Irish government correct in enforcing plain packaged cigarettes.
- how much less buyers were willing to pay for plain packaged cigarettes.
- how a picture of smoking-related diseases on cigarette packaging decreases demand for cigarettes.
- why Matt set up The Economic Impact Review.
- why economic impact studies should go through a peer-review process.
- about the lack of transparency in economic impact studies.
- about Matt’s libertarian stance and why he’s for fracking.
- what you get when a libertarian and socialist collaborate on an economics fracking paper.
- about the beautiful campus of Susquehanna University.
- why small class sizes are beneficial to both student and teacher.
- about Matt’s exploits in the World Series of Poker.
- how an understanding of statistics and behavioral economics can benefit a poker player.
- how Chris Moneymaker influenced Matt’s love of poker.
- the economics of what makes a winning poker player.
- if poker is a game of chance or a game of skill.
- how poker is akin to economic game theory.
- about people’s willingness to pay for GM foods versus non-GM foods.
- if there is a need for an independent 3rd party to disseminate information on GM foods.
- what annoys Matt the most.
- why Matt switched to a flipped classroom style of teaching.
- about deceptions in economic research and why journals will not publish such research.
- why research in psychology accepts deception of the subjects but economics does not.
- why a lot of economics journals will not publish your work.
In this interview, Matt mentions and discusses: Consumer demand, experimental auctions, bias, incentives, pricing, demand curve, sample size, economic impact of fracking, socialism, libertarianism, microeconomics, macroeconomics, game theory, political economic thought, forensics economics, positive analysis and normative analysis.
Are you Willing to Pay More for Genetically-Modified Foods?
The goal of experimental auction is to assess consumers demand for some particular product.
If consumers receive information from a group, such as Green Peace, who were against GM foods, then those consumers were willing to pay up to 50% less for foods that were genetically modified compared to a plain-labelled product.
If consumers got information from an agri-business company, such as Monsanto, about the benefits of GM foods, then they would pay just as much for these foods as conventional food products.
What would the impact be on consumer’s willingness to pay if there were scientific information or, what Professor Rousu called ‘Objective Verifiable Information’ available in the decision-making process? The objective information ‘dampened’ the effects on either side.
Where to find Matt:
- Website: Economic Impact Review
- Blog: paeconomist
- YouTube: Matthew’s Channel
- Twitter: @matthewrousu
- Research: What Makes a Winning Poker Player? Evidence From Online Poker. Gaming Law Review and Economics, 14 (9), Pages 677-683. (2010). With M. Smith.
- Other Research Papers: http://www.susqu.edu/facstaff/r/rousu/research