What is the behavioral in behavioral economics?
Trento (Italy), 5-6 June 2008




    Call for Papers









Call for papers


Workshop on

"What is the behavioral in behavioral economics"
Trento (Italy), 5-6 June 2008

Behavioral economics aims at increasing the realism of economic theory by incorporating psychological insights into economic models. However, behavioral economics does not call for a rejection of the neoclassical concepts of utility maximization, equilibrium, and efficiency but promotes an extension of the motivational scope of economic agents. Methodologically, it also promotes the integration of different kinds of evidence in the traditional toolbox of neoclassical economics.

In asking "What does behavioral mean in behavioral economics?" the workshop will provide an opportunity to take stock and critically reflect on the approaches and methods of behavioral analysis. The workshop aims at providing a forum for a constructive debate about recent developments in the behavioral approach to economic reasoning. Among the questions that we would like to address are the following:

  • What is the role of theory in behavioral economics? In what sense, if any, can experimentation provide knowledge that is partly independent of theoretical understanding?

  • Should behavioral economists depart more radically from the standard modeling techniques of neoclassical economics?

  • Can economics retain a distinctive methodological and disciplinary profile, or will it eventually merge with neighboring disciplines like cognitive science and evolutionary biology?

  • How do behavioral and neurophysiological data jointly contribute to our understanding of behavioral and decision processes?

  • What is the place of evolutionary theory in behavioral economics?

  • Are standard methodological conventions – such as statistical significance levels, monetary incentives, anonymity – overall adequate, or do they hinder the development of behavioral economics?

  • How do field data complement laboratory evidence and help in the application of economic models?

  • What is (or can be) the contribution of behavioral economics to mechanism design and policy-making?

Although the focus of the workshop is primarily methodological, we welcome papers that use empirical data or formal theoretical models to illustrate or substantiate a general philosophical argument or thesis.

The workshop will include a keynote address by Werner Gόth (Max Planck Institute of Economics, Jena).

Ending Session
The workshop will end with a round table discussion with the keynote speaker, the workshop presenters, and other invited participants.

Submission invitation
Papers related to any area of behavioral economics are invited for the workshop. Theoretical, empirical, and experimental contributions are welcome.
There will be no parallel sessions. 10 to 15 papers will be accepted.

Submission Items and Deadlines
Extended abstracts of proposed papers will be evaluated for inclusion on the workshop program.
Extended abstracts (of no more than 2 pages) should be sent by April 30th, 2008 to the organizing committee at the following address: . Notification of acceptance or other dispositions will be given by May 10th, 2008.

Publication in a special issue of the Journal of Socio Economics
Selected papers will be invited to submit a full paper for a special issue of the Journal of Socio Economics devoted to the outcomes of the workshop. The special issue papers will be refereed in the same manner as regular submissions. The Scientific Committee will suggest additional referees to the Editor who arranges the refereeing and review process.
When sending your extended abstract, please indicate in the email whether you intend to submit the paper, if selected, for publication in the special issue of the Journal of Socio Economics.
Manuscripts submitted for the special issue must not currently be under review, accepted for publication, or published elsewhere.

PhD Student Poster Session
There will be a poster session for PhD students working in the fields of behavioural economics and experimental economics. Posters should present either completed or on-going research related to the topics of the workshop.
Poster proposals should be submitted in the form of one page extended abstracts and sent by May 10th, 2008 to the organizing committee at the following address: . Notification of acceptance or other dispositions will be given by May 15th, 2008.

Scientific Committee:
Luigi Mittone (University of Trento)
Guido Ortona (University of Piemonte Orientale)
Francesco Guala (University of Exeter)
Matteo Ploner (University of Trento)

Location The conference will be held at the Conference Center Panorama, Sardagna (Trento). It is located on a rocky spur at about 560 meters above sea level. The place is quiet and isolated, but very close to the town center, which can be reached by cable car (about 5 min.) or by car/bus (about 20 min.).

It will be possible to book a room at the Conference Center Panorama:
Single room: € 30
Double room: € 50
Apartment (3 beds): € 70
Prices are per room (or apartment) per night, including breakfast. Every room is endowed with bathroom, telephone, TV, Internet connection, frigobar, and independent heating.
Alternatively, it will be possible to get a discount reservation in hotels in the city center that have an arrangement with the University of Trento (a list of these hotels can be found on the Workshop Website).

Registration and more information
Please consult the Website:
or contact
Dominique Cappelletti
Phone: +39 0461 882302
Fax: +39 0461 882335


Download the Call for Papers in pdf format