ICES Seminar in Experimental Economics and Game Theory

Fake News, Voter Overconfidence, and the Quality of Democratic Choice

Friday, April 30, 2021 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
Online Location, Zoom Meeting

ICES Seminar in Experimental Economics and Game Theory

The ICES Seminar in Experimental Economics and Game Theory of the Spring 2021 semester will feature:

Melis Kartal

University of Vienna

Fake News, Voter Overconfidence, and the Quality of Democratic Choice

 

Please contact ICES Office Manager (sbahabib@gmu.edu) for Zoom link.

 

Abstract

This paper studies, theoretically and experimentally, the effects of overconfidence and fake news on information aggregation and the quality of democratic choice in a common-interest setting. We theoretically show that overconfidence exacerbates the adverse effects of widespread misinformation (i.e., fake news). We then analyze richer models that allow for partisan biases, targeted misinformation intended to sway public opinion, and news signals correlated across voters (due to media ownership concentration or censure). In our experiment, overconfidence severely undermines information aggregation suggesting that collective decision-making with overconfidence can result in much more extreme outcomes than the aggregate of individual outcomes with overconfidence.

 

For more information about the Seminar Series, please visit the Seminar Schedule homepage.

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