Social Norms in Multi-Ethnic Societies Bridging Behavioural Social Sciences, Firenze, November 02-04, 2017

BEELab, the Behavioural and Experimental Economics Lab of the University of Florence, GSDS, the Graduate School of Decision Sciences, and TWI, the Thurgau Institute of Economics of the University of Konstanz, organise the interdisciplinary Workshop on: Social Norms in Multi-Ethnic Societies Bridging Behavioural Social Sciences to be held in Firenze (Italy) on November 2-4, 2017.

Workshop "Repeated Games: Theory and Experiments", October 5-6, 2017

We propose an intensive one day workshop on repeated games with local (junior and senior) and international researchers. The goal of the workshop is to bring together researchers who work either theoretically or empirically on repeated games. Topics and methodologies, including lab experiments on behavioral aspects, draw from political science, economics and also psychology. GSDS doctoral students from all three fields will have the opportunity to present their work and take an active role as discussants of the papers presented by the invited speakers.

Many social and economic interactions are characterized by repeated interactions, which can be theoretically modeled and analyzed using game theory. Applications include repeated elections, repeated gift-exchange between social groups or friends, and collusion of firms engaging in repeated price-setting. Many theoretical predictions rely on complicated strategies and equilibrium refinements, for example, renegotiation proofness, evolutionary stability, or backward induction over many periods. Even after applying refinements, typically many equilibria are left, which makes theoretical predictions imprecise. It is, therefore, crucial to test theoretical predictions empirically and also to learn in an explorative way how people play these games. Laboratory experiments offer an ideal setting as they give researchers control and observations of the key variables. The exact payoffs, pieces of private information, and communication, which are all assumed to play important roles in these games, are hardly ever documented and accessible in observational datasets. In the lab, they can be manipulated and observed. Both repeated game theory and experimental work in this area are very active fields of research and many important contributions have been made in the last decade. Topics that have received particular attention are (i) imperfect monitoring, that is, games where the behavior of other players is only observable with noise, (ii) communication, which allows players to coordinate but also gives rise to renegotiation concerns, (iii) relational contracts, for example to model long-term interactions of employers and employees, (iv) political agency models, in which voters can learn about the type of the politicians over time, and (v) cartel behavior.

Workshop on Dynamical Systems and Brain-inspired Information Processing, October 05– 06, 2017

This workshop focuses on data-driven approaches to machine/statistical learning  based on exploiting dynamical systems, sometimes brain-inspired, to perform complex computational and information processing tasks.  Various mathematical connections have already been established between dynamical systems and the classical concept of Turing computability, but it is not clear whether this notion is the most adequate  from a dynamical systems perspective.

This workshop will explore mathematical, algorithmical, neuro-computational, and physical-realization aspects of information processing dynamical systems. The aim is to gather researchers interested in these topics and to seed discussions (and possible future collaborations) between machine/statistical learners,  computational neuroscientists, and microprocessor physicists in Europe.

Workshop "Recent Development of Spatial Models of Party Competition", July 20-21, 2017

This workshop brrought together some of the most distinguished theoretical and empirical scholars of party competition from Germany and worldwide such as Samuel Merrill, Jim Adams, Franz Urban Pappi and many others. Together, we discussed new avenues and directions in spatial models of party competition. Ever since the seminal contribution of Downs that sparked the field of spatial models, theorizing about and the study of party competition in spatial terms has greatly contributed to our understanding of political dynamics. At the same time, the spatial models faces ongoing challenges with regard to the integration of insights from neighbouring fields such as political psychology. Moreover, the measurement and empirical assessment of the sometimes rather abstracts concepts proposed in the theoretical models presents a difficult task for applied researchers. This workshop featured some of the latest developments and advances striving to face these challenges and discussed them in an interdisciplinary setting.

Seminar "Motivation and Leadership“, June 8, 2017

Seminar and Fireside chat with Emilio Galli-Zugaro who spoke about the right “career choices“ in academic and non-academic settings for students and how to find them.

Emilio Galli Zugaro is Chairman of Methodos S.p.A. Milan, author and scholar at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich, teaching Communicative Leadership at the Faculty of Business Administration as well as holding courses at the European School of Management and Technology in Berlin. He works as executive coach for top-managers and entrepreneurs and as a mentor for start-ups. He is Senior Advisor of FTI Consulting, Frankfurt. During his studies in political sciences in Würzburg and Rome in the years 1980-1985 he worked in communications functions in public service in Rome. From 1985 to 1992 he worked as a journalist for different media, like the Italian edition of FORTUNE, Wirtschaftswoche, l‘Indipendente, Italia Oggi, Il Giornale, Finanz und Wirtschaft, The European. For these media he covered correspondance offices in Italy, Germany and the USA as well as the job as diplomatic correspondent. From 1992 to 2015 he was the Head of Group Communications of Allianz SE. He is a member of Arthur Page Society.

Book Conference “Responsive Governance: National Elections and European Cooperation”, February 7, 2017 

In-depth discussion of the book project on “Responsive Governance: National Elections and European Cooperation.” The book manuscript is the product of Christina Schneiders Alexander-von-Humboldt fellowship at the University of Konstanz. Christina Schneider, invited six political science experts on the topic of European integration.  The participants from GSDS were Prof. Dr. Gerald Schneider and Prof. Dr. Dirk Leuffen. The participants from other universities were Prof. Dr. Frank Schimmelfennig from the ETH Zurich, Prof. Dr. Simon Hug from the University of Geneva, and Prof. Dr. Stefanie Bailer from the University of Basel. All six participants are experts in the field of European integration, and have worked on issues of European negotation and cooperation. The participants commented various aspects of the book project.