Adrian Wolanski

Ph.D. Candidate – Department of Economics

Email: awolansk at ucsd dot edu

Research Statement

You can find a copy of my research statement here.

Working Papers

Consistent social choice, Joint with Evgenii Baranov (Job Market Paper)

This paper studies when it is possible to link a social planner's preferences across groups of different agents. We propose a preference consistency criterion that relates members of a family of social preferences across domains of different agents; this criterion requires preferences to be identical on domains differing only by adding agents with choice-independent payoffs. We derive additional domain changes for which consistent preferences are invariant, and test adherence to these predictions in an online laboratory experiment. While consistency rates are reasonably high, we document significant differences in consistency across the different types of domain changes. Additionally, we find that participants tend to choose options with higher inequality/lower inefficiency as domain size increases.

Attitudes toward intertemporal inequality, Joint with Evgenii Baranov (Draft available upon request)

We provide a theoretical approach for investigating attitudes towards intertemporal inequality. We generalize the Pigou-Dalton principle to intertemporal settings by formulating several partial orders on the space of consumption streams. Three of the partial orders account for payments received over the lifespan of the stream, and differ only by how intensely one stream dominates another. A fourth partial order only accounts for the level of inequality experienced in a specific period, rather than over the lifespan of the stream. We then perform a laboratory experiment to distinguish the empirical relevance of these different partial orders and inequality rankings. We find that orders which rank whole streams accurately reflect how participants view streams for themselves, but these views do not translate into how they choose for others. Instead, many of our participants display inequality aversion based on period-wise outcomes. This suggests another avenue to resolve the impossibility result of Zuber (2011).

Dynamic inconsistency and convex commitment devices, Joint with Danil Dmitriev (Preliminary, draft available upon request)

We present a laboratory experiment designed to measure both actual and perceived dynamic inconsistency using a novel convex commitment device. We find that many participants demand a great deal of commitment despite displaying little evidence of dynamic inconsistency, resulting in welfare losses. This contrasts with the usual finding in the literature of welfare losses caused by participants not demanding commitment despite being dynamically inconsistent. Our results suggest commitment devices require careful design to guard against welfare losses from both excessive and insufficient uptake.

Works In Progress

Decision making with large language models, Joint with Evgenii Baranov and Dmitrii Kiselev

Older Publications

The role of insurance in international shipping costs, Economics Letters, 2017.