Experimental Economics Laboratory
TThe Laboratory of Experimental Economics (LABEX in Spanish) aims to contribute to improving social well-being by deepening the understanding of human behavior and improving the efficiency of public and private strategies that address social and economic problems in specific contexts. Its research is based on behavioral economics and experimental economics.
Behavioral economics states that we sometimes act with our emotions, moral codes, and social influences, and make decisions quickly and automatically, using heuristic rules, defined as part of a subconscious and emotional thought that overrides reflective thinking. At LABEX, we study the factors that influence the decision-making of individuals or groups of people in a controlled environment, through economic experiments that use real incentives. With the help of behavioral economics, we can introduce changes in the decision environment (nudges), creating ideal conditions for people to choose the optimal option.
Experimental economics provides methodologies that help identify the causes of certain social events or phenomena. Applying tools such as randomized controlled trials, whether, in a laboratory or the natural environment of a population, we test causal logic or the theory of change of interventions with applications in public policy and the business sector. This allows us to test solutions, understanding how and why they work, before implementing them at a larger scale.
LABEX offers the following services to researchers, public policy makers and private companies:
- Replicate or implement economic experiments: Adaptation of experiment’s software and protocols.
- Design small-scaled experiments to verify and improve the effectiveness of policies or strategies, using tools of behavioral economics (nudging).