Toru Suzuki is a micro theorist who received his PhD from Boston University. He has published his works on various topics including communication game, economics and langauge, contest design, voting game, bounded rationality, and political economy. For more details, please visit his personal website.
Can supervise: YES
Micro theory, Game theory, Economics and Language, and Bounded rationality
A decision maker (DM) selects a project from a set of alternatives with uncertain productivity. After the choice, she observes a signal about productivity and decides how much effort to put in. This paper analyzes the optimal decision problem of the DM who rationally filters information to deal with her post-decision cognitive dissonance. It is shown that the optimal effort level for a project can be affected by unchosen projects in her choice set, and the nature of the choice set-dependence is determined by the signal structure. Some comparative statics of choice set-dependence is also provided. Finally, based on the results, the optimal choice set design is also explored. This paper offers a simple framework to explain the experimental finding in psychology that people's effort level for a project can be enhanced when the project is chosen by themselves rather than by others.
When an agent's motivation is sensitive to how his supervisor thinks about the agent's competence, the supervisor has to take into account both informational and expressive contents of her message to the agent. This paper shows that the supervisor can credibly express her trust in the agent's ability only by being unclear about what to do. Suggesting what to do, i.e., "directives," could reveal the supervisor's "distrust" and reduce the agent's equilibrium effort level even though it provides useful information about the decision environment. There is also an equilibrium in which directives are neutral in expressive content. However, it is shown that neologism proofness favors equilibria in which directives are double-edged swords.
© 2015, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Unlike in the standard jury voting experiment, the voting environment in practice has no explicit signal structure. Voters then need to conceptualize the information structure in order to update their beliefs based on “pivotal reasoning”. This paper investigates whether voters can play a strategic voting under a “detail-free” environment. We obtain non-parametric predictions in terms of the differences in voting behaviors under majority and unanimity rule. Our experimental results suggest that voters can still play the strategic voting as in the existing experiments.
This paper investigates how an office-motivated incumbent can use transparency enhancement on public spending to signal his budgetary management ability and win re-election. We show that, when the incumbent faces a popular challenger, transparency policy can be an effective signaling device. It is also shown that electoral pressure can have a nonmonotonic effect on transparency, but a higher electoral pressure always increases the informativeness of signaling and the voter's utility.
Agents compete to solve a problem. Each agent simultaneously chooses either a safe method or a risky method to solve the problem. This paper analyzes a prize scheme as an incentive to induce the optimal risk-taking level which maximizes the designer's interest. It is shown that whenever the winner-take-all scheme induces excessive risk-taking, there exists a prize scheme which induces the optimal risk-taking. Moreover, the existence of such a prize scheme is guaranteed if the number of competitors is sufficiently large.
I investigate the complementarity of behavioral biases in a simple invest- ment problem. The agent has incomplete knowledge about the correlation between fitness and the decision environment. Nature endows the agent with a decision pro- cedure so that the induced action can reflect this correlation. I show that the agent with this decision procedure always exhibits (i) present biased time preference, (ii) distorted beliefs, and (iii) cognitive dissonance. The three biases are complements and the absence of one of them destroys the value of the other two. The decision procedure also provides insights into the non-fungibility of savings.