论文题目：Confusion and Competition
论文摘要：Do firms seek to make a market transparent or do they want to manipulate the perception of product characteristics? Contrary to the well-studied case of homogeneous goods, obfuscation is not necessarily an equilibrium phenomenon in markets with differentiated goods. In particular, if the taste distribution is polarized, so that indifferent consumers are relatively rare, firms seek to educate consumers. However, if the taste distribution features a concentration of indecisive consumers, confusion is beneficial for firms and obfuscation an equilibrium strategy. The adverse welfare consequences of obfuscation can be more severe than with homogeneous goods, as consumers may not only pay higher prices, but also choose a dominated option or deny choice altogether. Our model can also be adapted to offer new insights on the incentives for political candidates to induce polarized opinions by confusing voters.
报告人简介：刘烁，2019年毕业于瑞士苏黎世大学经济系，获博士学位，现为北京大学光华管理学院应用经济系助理教授。目前主要研究领域为组织经济学，产业组织理论，机制设计和博弈论。研究成果发表或即将发表于Theoretical Economics, RAND Journal of Economics, Games and Economic Behavior, Economic Theory等国际知名学术期刊。