BEELab

Behavioral & Experimental Economics Laboratory

Welcome!

Welcome to the website of the Behavioral & Experimental Economics Laboratory (BEELab) at Maastricht University.

The BEELab was established in 2008 by the School of Business and Economics (SBE). It provides SBE researchers with high quality facilities for the conduction of behavioral experiments.

Students and other potential participants may use this site to acquire more information about the experiments we do and how to register to our participant database. SBE members are able to login to the Intranet where they find experimenter specific information on the organization of the laboratory and the procedures we use.

Please report any problems with this website to one of the coordinators (see contact).

Participate!

Register to our database and receive invitations for experiments.

 

Intranet

Click here to get to the BEELab intranet. There you find more specific information about the usage of the BEELab. Note that staff member credentials are required.

Facilities

The BEELab facilities include the actual experimental laboratory and the recruitment database.

The laboratory consists of two rooms separated by a removable wall. The rooms contain 13 and 20 computer terminals, respectively. Additionally, there is a small briefing room at the entrance of the lab with 16 seats, white board, and beamer. The terminals are HP Small Form Factor Business PCs connected by local area network (and to the Internet). All terminals are equipped with LCD screens and headsets and run Windows 10. They are maintained by the SBE’s IT-support group (ACO). For the recruitment of experiment participants, we use ORSEE (by Ben Greiner).

FAQs

Actually we do not want to be too specific about the setup and the goals of our experiments, as this could create biases in the data we collect. In general we test economic and psychological theories of behavior in markets, bargaining, dilemma situations, risk taking, etc. As a subject you should not care so much about our motives for collecting the data. You should rather make decisions which you deem to be good decisions.

At the beginning of an experiment you receive precise instructions with all the necessary information. You can be sure of the following:

  • There is no deception in the instructions! You can trust the rules which you receive from the experimenters. Also your compensation will be made as announced in the beginning of each experiment.
  • In general your decision data is stored anonymously. You will be explicitly and clearly notified beforehand if this is not the case.

There is no general rule for payoffs, but in order to give you some clues:

  • Payoff rules vary from experiment to experiment (the rules are determined by the corresponding experimenters).
  • We advise experimenters to pay an average between 10 and 15 Euro per hour. Note that this is an average. This means that for individuals it could be less or more.
  • Your personal payoff depends on your decisions during the experiment. Most often it also depends on what other participants decide and sometimes there is also a random factor involved.
  • Many (not all) experiments involve a so-called show-up premium. This means that you get a certain amount of money already for being in time and for participating. On top of that you can earn more money with your decisions.
  • We are planning to run experiments regularly. Thus, we will pay sufficient amounts in order to keep a sufficient number of interested participants.
  • In most cases we will pay you in cash right after the experiment. In cases where we need to calculate results and payoffs first, you will be able to pick up your payoffs at the secretaries’ office. Sometimes we also use bank transfers.

In the past we only addressed UM (Maastricht University) students. We are currently trying to extend our database to other institutions (e.g. Hogeschool Zuyd). If you do not belong to a university or hogeschool, please contact the lab coordinators and ask whether you are eligible.

99.9% of all strategic situations are asymmetric, maybe even more. Asymmetries result from different information, different power levels, different strategic possibilities, and so on. Think for example of a relationship between a seller and a buyer or of a relationship between employer and employee. Consequently we are interested in asymmetric settings and it can be that participants receive rather unequal amounts of money. In such cases we normally assign the roles of the participants in a random manner (e.g. by drawing cards). This is the maximum fairness we can achieve, given our research interests.

In principle the answer is “yes”. However, this is an unlikely event. In general our experiments are designed in a way to let participants make profits (sometimes less, sometimes more). In experiments where participants can make losses we pay a show-up premium that is high enough to cover the likely losses. However if you lose more than covered by your show-up premium (by very stupid or very risky decisions), we expect you to cover the rest out of your own pocket.

Having said this, please note that we are not interested in engaging in debates with participants about losses. Therefore we avoid these situations whenever we can. We have no incentives to spoil our reputation, because we depend on you coming back for more experiments.

For most experiments participants do not need to have any pre-knowledge. Common sense and a good command of the English language are sufficient. For those experiments where pre-knowledge is needed we select participants according to their study programme.

The time for an experiment varies. Up to now we have had experiments with duration’s from 20 minutes until 3 hours. Sometimes an experiment consists of multiple sessions in the laboratory (for example a training session in one week and a real experiment in the next). In any case you will be informed about duration etc. before you register for a specific experiment.

Location

The BEELab is located in the inner city of Maastricht, next to the main building of the School of Business and Economics. The address is

Rooms 0.001 to 0.004
Tongersestraat 49A
6211 LM Maastricht
The Netherlands

To get to the entrance, enter the parking area of Tongersestraat 53 through the main gate and walk straight on. Do not turn right to the main entrance of the School but turn left, cross the bicycle parking and enter building 49A. Turn to the left and walk down the corridor until you arrive at a little hall. There you find the main entrance to the BEELab.

Note that in some cases we use the street entrance of the BEELab. You reach this entrance if you start from the main gate and walk down Tongersestraat until you arrive at building 49A.

Contact

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