We show theoretically and empirically that executives are paid less for their own firm's performance and more for their rivals' performance if an industry's firms are more commonly owned by the same set of investors. Higher common ownership also leads to higher unconditional total pay. We exploit quasi-exogenous variation in common ownership from a mutual fund trading scandal to support a causal interpretation.
The spreadsheet software Microsoft Excel, when used with default settings, is known to convert gene names to dates and floating-point numbers. A programmatic scan of leading genomics journals reveals that approximately one-fifth of papers with supplementary Excel gene lists contain erroneous gene name conversions.
The metaregressions examining the temporal trends indicated that the effects of CBT have declined linearly and steadily since its introduction, as measured by patients’ self-reports (the BDI, p < .001), clinicians’ ratings (the HRSD, p < .01) and rates of remission (p < .01). Subgroup analyses confirmed that the declining trend was present in both within-group (pre/post) designs (p < .01) and controlled trial designs (p < .02). Thus, modern CBT clinical trials seemingly provided less relief from depressive symptoms as compared with the seminal trials.
The TseTse fly is unique to Africa and transmits a parasite harmful to humans and lethal to livestock. This paper tests the hypothesis that the TseTse reduced the ability of Africans to generate an agricultural surplus historically. Ethnic groups inhabiting TseTse-suitable areas were less likely to use domesticated animals and the plow, less likely to be politically centralized, and had a lower population density. These correlations are not found in the tropics outside of Africa, where the fly does not exist. The evidence suggests current economic performance is affected by the TseTse through the channel of precolonial political centralization.
Results of two studies reported here provide further evidence that the mere presence of a cell phone may be sufficiently distracting to produce diminished attention and deficits in task-performance, especially for tasks with greater attentional and cognitive demands.
Consider this a partial answer to Ryan Carey's request for criticism of effective altruism. A community associated with that label says it wants to promote charity as helping, and it points out how common charity patterns often fall far short of that goal. And if the main cause of falling short were ignorance or laziness, this should induce a lot more helping. But if the main cause is instead hypocrisy, then what they are mainly doing is exposing hypocrisy.
And yes, for some people exposing their hypocrisy will shame them into more effectively doing what they had been pretending to do. But for others it may embarrass them into doing less.
Also remember "The Effect of Effectiveness" by Karlan and Wood. From the abstract:
...we find that amongst recent prior donors (...), large prior donors increase the likelihood of giving in response to information on aid effectiveness, whereas small prior donors decrease their giving. (...) ...those motivated by altruism will respond positively to appeals based on evidence, whereas those motivated by warm glow may respond negatively to appeals based on evidence as it turns off the emotional trigger for giving, or highlights uncertainty in aid effectiveness.
Given their methodology, I think Karlan and Wood's conclusions should be seen as highly tentative. But then, the starkness of their reported results would seem to give good support to their methodological assumptions.
Bryan Caplan's new post is titled "Intelligence Makes People Think Like Economists: Further Evidence." The claim from the Duarte, Haidt et al. article he quotes is that "economic conservatism" and IQ are positively correlated. The comments on my FB make me think I should have stressed this more, as some seem to have run away with the idea that high IQ folks tend to frame questions in the same sort of way as academic economists. Now that's a pretty debatable interpretation of "economic conservatism". Maybe I'll get around to checking how the article operationalises this concept some time, or maybe someone else will let me know.
Bryan's post provides the 7 relevant references given in the article's mini literature review.
I think leftism is often seen as the province of intelligent people, and dispelling that notion with sheer IQ data might do a lot of good. True, people will get to say "ad hominem". And, of course, that people are more likely to think X the smarter they are does not guarantee that X is true. Still, I think it's evidence for X. How strong this evidence is depends on a number of other contentious issues, though.
It has been proposed that major depressive disorder is near-identical with sickness behavior, so raising the possibility that it is a maladaptive manifestation of sickness behavior due to abnormalities in circulating cytokines.Scott Alexander has recently blogged about this, or closely related stuff, here. I have not read his post yet.
The authors of this study surveyed a large number (combined N = 800) of social and personality psychologists and discovered several interesting facts. First, although only 6% described themselves as conservative “overall,” there was more diversity of political opinion on economic issues and foreign policy. Second, respondents significantly underestimated the proportion of conservatives among their colleagues. Third, conservatives fear negative consequences of revealing their political beliefs to their colleagues. Finally, they are right to do so: In decisions ranging from paper reviews to hiring, many social and personality psychologists said that they would discriminate against openly conservative colleagues. The more liberal respondents were, the more they said they would discriminate.
from the abstract of Political Diversity in Social and Personality Psychology, by Yoel Inbar and Joris Lammers
This IMF published paper by Ostry, Berg, and Tsangarides presents empirical evidence on the relationships between inequality, redistributon, and growth. From the executive summary:
Second, lower net inequality is robustly correlated with faster and more durable growth, for a given level of redistribution. These results are highly supportive of our earlier work.
And third, redistribution appears generally benign in terms of its impact on growth; only in extreme cases is there some evidence that it may have direct negative effects on growth. Thus the combined direct and indirect effects of redistribution—including the growth effects of the resulting lower inequality—are on average pro-growth.