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UniversitÓ degli Studi di Trento

CEEL Summer school Fourth summer school

Fourth Trento Summer School

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CEEL program in Adaptive Economic Dynamics
30 June - 11 July 2003

Fourth Trento Summer School

Intensive course in
Behavioral Economics

Daniel Friedman, University of California, Santa Cruz
David Laibson, Harvard University


Behavioral economics has had an enormous impact on the economics profession over the past two decades. The most recent Nobel Prize in Economics and the most recent John Bates Clark Medal have both gone to behavioral economists. In recent years, behavioral research seminars, behavioral faculty appointments, and behavioral PhD dissertations have become common at leading US and European universities. But, most economics curricula have not yet caught up. Few schools offer coursework in Behavioral Economics. This year the Trento Summer School offers a comprehensive introduction to the concepts and theories of behavioral economics. A partial list of topics includes:

  • Heuristics and biases in decision-making.
  • Prospect Theory, including loss aversion and the endowment effect.
  • Framing and mental accounts.
  • Social preferences and theories of fairness, reciprocity and inequity aversion.
  • Intertemporal choice and self-control.
  • Bounded rationality, learning, and behavioral game theory.
  • Evolutionary theories of preferences and institutions.
  • Emotional decision-making.
  • Neuroscience, cognitive science, and genetics.

The lectures will use a wide range of methodological tools, including theory, experiments, numerical simulations, and applied econometrics. The school will survey recent behavioral applications in finance, labor economics, industrial organization, public finance, and macroeconomics. Most importantly, the workshop gives each student the opportunity to launch a new research project under expert guidance.

This years intensive course will be co-organized and taught by Daniel Friedman of the University of California, Santa Cruz and David Laibson of Harvard. An incomplete list of guest lecturers includes Colin Camerer of the California Institute of Technology, Stefano DellaVigna of University of California, Berkeley, Massimo Egidi of the University of Trento, Ernst Fehr of the Institute for Empirical Research in Economics, University of Zurich, George Loewenstein of Carnegie Mellon University and Ulrike Malmendier of Stanford.

Interested graduate students and post-docs are encouraged to apply by submitting a curriculum vitae, a two-page essay describing their interest and background in behavioral economics. Applicants should also submit a course transcript from their PhD program, including advanced examinations passed, and two letters of recommendation.

Applications are due by April 30, 2003. We encourage electronic submissions.

Admissions decisions will be announced by May 26, 2003. All applicants will be informed by e-mail about the results.

The mini-school will be held at Sardagna (Trento, Italy), a beautiful retreat, accessed by cable car, in the Dolomite Mountains. All student participants are asked to stay for the entire duration of the conference. Food and accommodation at the conference will be completely covered (participants will have to cover travel to the conference).

Please direct logistical questions to the Summer School Secretary, Oxana Tokarchuk (ceel-sschool@black.economia.unitn.it).


This is the Fourth of a series of intensive courses to be offered by the Computable and Experimental Economics Laboratory (CEEL).

Previous courses were offered in Computable Economics (2000, Professor K. Vela Velupillai), Experimental Economics (2001, Professor Daniel Friedman) and Adaptive Economic Processes (2002, Professor Peter Howitt).

Two future courses are planned in:
Institutional Economics (2004).
Evolutionary Economic Dynamics (2005).



Program Director: Axel Leijonhufvud

Co-organizers of the School: Daniel Friedman and David Laibson

Guest Lecturers:
- Colin Camerer of the California Institute of Technology
- Stefano DellaVigna of University of California, Berkeley
- Massimo Egidi of the University of Trento
Ernst Fehr, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics, University of Zurich
- George Loewenstein, Carnegie Mellon University
- Ulrike Malmendier of Stanford

Laboratory Director: Luigi Mittone

Lab Technical Assistant: Marco Tecilla

The course is offered by the Computable and Experimental Economics Laboratory CEEL of the University of Trento, with the financial support of Latsis Foundation (Geneva) and Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Trento e Rovereto (Trento).

Computable and Experimental Economics Laboratory (CEEL)
Dipartimento di Economia
Università degli Studi di Trento
Via Inama 5
I-38100 Trento
Fax: (+39) 0461-882222


For further information please contact the Summer School secretary


Program of the School

Application Procedure
Biographical sketches of instructor and guest lecturers Application Form
How to get to Trento Photos

Department of Economics via Inama, 5 I-38100 Trento tel. +39 461 282201