A Caltech Library Service

Three Papers in Neuroeconomics


Bhatt, Meghana A. (2008) Three Papers in Neuroeconomics. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/X08G-9546.


I consider the role of automatic psychological and neural processes in different settings. First, how does advertising affect consumer perceptions of a product? I assert that one of the ma jor mechanisms used in marketing is the creation of implicit associations among concepts. A neural network framework is adapted to model how these associations evolve and interact. Use of this formal model allows us to consider some of the indirect effects of advertising, particularly “spillover” and “dilution” effects where the advertisements for one product can help or harm ther perceptions of another. Second, I use fMRI to consider neural activation patterns during strategic thinking. Two studies reveal the possible importance of various neural areas to belief formation, strategic deception, and suspicion. The first study focuses on the neural correlates of belief formation, particularly the difference between equilibrium and out-of-equilibrium decisions. We find both neural activations and behavioral evidence that sub jects have relatively shallow belief processes, often apparently assigning too much agency to themselves, when they are out of equilibrium. The second study focuses on a bargaining interaction where a “buyer” has incentive to deceive a “seller” in order to get a low price for a hypothetical product. We find neural correlates to strategic deception in the dorsal striatum and to suspicion of deception in the ACC.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:advertising; bargaining; belief formation; neuroeconomics
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Humanities and Social Sciences
Major Option:Social Science
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Camerer, Colin F.
Thesis Committee:
  • Camerer, Colin F. (chair)
  • Rangel, Antonio
  • Goeree, Jacob K.
  • Yariv, Leeat
Defense Date:7 May 2007
Record Number:CaltechETD:etd-05162008-165528
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:1842
Deposited By: Imported from ETD-db
Deposited On:30 Jul 2008
Last Modified:27 Nov 2019 18:36

Thesis Files

PDF - Final Version
See Usage Policy.


Repository Staff Only: item control page