All Rights Reserved
AccessEcon LLC 2006, 2008.
Powered by MinhViet JSC

Alessandro Lanteri and Marco Novarese
''The beauty of the contest: A novel approach to experimental beauty contests.''
( 2008, Vol. 3 No.52 )
We introduce a novel beauty contest experiment to study the gap between individual preferences and beliefs about collective preferences of physical attractiveness. In the first round, participants vote their 3 favorite ladies in the second round they vote the 3 ladies they believe were the most voted in the first round.Unlike other beauty contest experiments, our setup does not investigate depth of reasoning in a cognitively intense task. Instead, it is meant to investigate the existence of shared definitions of physical attractiveness, and whether these may be successfully employed as focal points.Our results show that most participants hold mistaken beliefs about collective preferences and overestimate and underestimate how well liked certain ladies are. Regardless of these mistakes, the winning portraits win by a wide margin in both rounds. Moreover, our participants are better at predicting the portraits which will not be the most voted than those which will.
Keywords: Beauty
JEL: C9 - Design of Experiments: General
Manuscript Received : Aug 25 2008 Manuscript Accepted : Aug 31 2008

  This abstract has been downloaded 1836 times                The Full PDF of this paper has been downloaded 154298 times