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I would like to see someone give a relatively in depth but popular treatment of the experimental research on bubbles (which I am sure there is a lot of). I don’t know much about this subject myself, but I have read a lot of people postulate bubbles and causes of bubbles in explaining the current crisis, but none of it sounds like it has been informed by research on how bubbles form.


The Monkey Cage’s Lee points to an article, Psychology and Experimental Economics: A Gap in Abstraction (unfortunately gated), that discusses the differences between how experimental psychology and experimental economics approach the same phenomena and how the two fields might converge.

The paper is short but quite interesting, and it covers some experimental research on altruism and on gender discrimination.

Strangely, the authors twice refer to utility maximization as a normative theory not a positive theory.

For economists, these elements are derived from their general normative theory—that behavior is driven by utility maximization.

I thought that was odd.