Error Cascades in Observational Learning: An Experiment on the Chinos Game

Feri, Francesco and Melendez-Jimenez, Miguel A. and Ponti, Giovanni and Vega Redondo, Fernando (2008) Error Cascades in Observational Learning: An Experiment on the Chinos Game. [Working Paper]. European University Institute, Badia Fiesolana (Fi). p. 33. Economics Working Papers (No. ECO2008/14).

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The paper reports an experimental study based on a variant of the popular Chinos game, which is used as a simple but paradigmatic instance of observational learning. There are three players, arranged in sequence, each of whom wins a fixed price if she manages to guess the total number of coins lying in everybody’s hands. Our evidence shows that, despite the remarkable frequency of equilibrium outcomes, deviations from optimal play are also significant. And when such deviations occur, we find that, for any given player position, the probability of a mistake is increasing in the probability of a mistake of her predecessors. This is what we call an error cascade, which we rationalize by way of a simple model of “noisy equilibrium”.

Item Type: Report / Paper (Working Paper)
Research documents and activity classification: Working Papers > Refereed Working Papers / of international relevance
Divisions: Department of Business and Management
Additional Information: The paper is the preliminary version of: "Error cascades in observational learning: An experiment on the Chinos game" (Francesco Feri, Miguel A. Meléndez-Jiménez, Giovanni Ponti, Fernando Vega-Redondo) in Games and Economic Behavior (2010), now in press and available online from 14 October 2010.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Positional Learning; Error Cascades.
MIUR Scientific Area: Area 13 - Economics and Statistics > SECS-P/01 Political Economy
Deposited by: Maria Teresa Nisticò
Date Deposited: 14 Dec 2010 15:27
Last Modified: 22 Apr 2015 00:13


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