Working papers SES

Working papers SES
La collection des Working Papers SES est une série de cahiers de recherche présentant les différents travaux menés au sein de la Faculté des sciences économiques et sociales de l'Université de Fribourg (Suisse). Cette collection existe depuis 1980 et les thèmes abordés reflètent les différentes orientations scientifiques des membres de la Faculté: économie politique, gestion d'entreprise, informatique de gestion, méthodes quantitatives, sciences sociales et sciences des médias et de la communication. Le contenu de ces travaux n'engage que la responsabilité de leurs auteurs.

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Université de Fribourg

Founding family ownership, stock market returns, and agency problems

Eugster, Nicolas ; Isakov, Dušan

(Working Papers SES ; 490)

This paper explores the relationship between founding family ownership and stock market returns. Using the entire population of non-financial firms listed on the Swiss stock market for 2003–2013, we find that the stock returns of family firms are significantly higher than those of non-family firms after adjusting the returns for different risk factors and firm characteristics. Family firms...

Université de Fribourg

Including covariates in the regression discontinuity design

Frölich, Markus ; Huber, Martin

(Working Papers SES ; 489)

This paper proposes a fully nonparametric kernel method to account for observed covariates in regression discontinuity designs (RDD), which may increase precision of treatment effect estimation. It is shown that conditioning on covariates reduces the asymptotic variance and allows estimating the treatment effect at the rate of one-dimensional nonparametric regression, irrespective of the...

Université de Fribourg

Peer effects on perseverance

Buechel, Berno ; Mechtenberg, Lydia ; Petersen, Julia

(Working Papers SES ; 488)

Successful performance – be it in school, at the job, or in sports activities – requires perseverance, i.e., persistent work on a demanding task. We investigate in a controlled laboratory experiment how an individual’s social environment affects perseverance. We find evidence for two kinds of peer effects: being observed by a peer can serve as a commitment device, while observing a peer can...

Université de Fribourg

Combining experimental evidence with machine learning to assess anti-corruption educational campaigns among Russian university students

Denisova-Schmidt, Elena ; Huber, Martin ; Leontyeva, Elvira ; Solovyeva, Anna

(Working Papers SES ; 487)

This paper examines how anti-corruption educational campaigns affect the attitudes of Russian university students towards corruption and academic integrity. About 2,000 survey participants were randomly assigned to one of four different information materials (brochures or videos) about the negative consequences of corruption or to a control group. Using machine learning to detect effect...

Université de Fribourg

The strength of weak leaders - an experiment on social influence and social learning in teams

Buechel, Berno ; Klössner, Stefan ; Lochmüller, Martin ; Rauhut, Heiko

(Working Papers SES ; 486)

We investigate how the selection process of a leader affects team performance with respect to social learning. We use a lab experiment in which an incentivized guessing task is repeated in a star network with the leader at the center. Leader selection is either based on competence, on self-confidence, or made at random. Teams with random leaders do not underperform compared to rather competent...

Université de Fribourg

The swing voter's curse in social networks

Buechel, Berno ; Mechtenberg, Lydia

(Working Papers SES ; 485)

We study private communication in social networks prior to a majority vote on two alternative policies. Some (or all) agents receive a private imperfect signal about which policy is correct. They can, but need not, recommend a policy to their neighbors in the social network prior to the vote. We show theoretically and empirically that communication can undermine efficiency of the vote and hence...

Université de Fribourg

Direct and indirect effects based on difference-in-differences with an application to political preferences following the Vietnam draft lottery

Deuchert, Eva ; Huber, Martin ; Schelker, Mark

(Working Papers SES ; 473 (revised))

This paper proposes a difference-in-differences approach for disentangling a total treatment effect on some outcome into a direct effect as well as an indirect effect operating through a binary intermediate variable – or mediator – within strata defined upon how the mediator reacts to the treatment. Imposing random treatment assignment along with specific common trend (and further)...

Université de Fribourg

Simple Statistical Screens to Detect Bid Rigging

Imhof, David

(Working Papers SES ; 484)

The paper applies simple statistical screens to a bid-rigging cartel in Switzerland, and shows how well the screens detect it by capturing the impact of collusion on the discrete distribution of the bids. In case of bid rigging, the support for the distribution of the bids decreases involving a lower variance, illustrated by the coefficient of variance and the kurtosis statistic. Furthermore,...

Université de Fribourg

Econometric tests to detect bid-rigging cartels: does it work?

Imhof, David

(Working Papers SES ; 483)

This paper tests how well the method proposed by Bajari and Ye (2003) performs to detect bidrigging cartels. In the case investigated in this paper, the bid-rigging cartel rigged all contracts during the collusive period, and all firms participated to the bid-rigging cartel. The two econometric tests constructed by Bajari and Ye (2003) produce a high number of false negative results: the tests do...

Université de Fribourg

Nonparametric estimation of natural direct and indirect effects based on inverse probability weighting

Hsu, Yu-Chin ; Huber, Martin ; Lai, Tsung Chih

(Working Papers SES ; 482)

Using a sequential conditional independence assumption, this paper discusses fully nonparametric estimation of natural direct and indirect causal effects in causal mediation analysis based on inverse probability weighting. We propose estimators of the average indirect effect of a binary treatment, which operates through intermediate variables (or mediators) on the causal path between the...