For each paper, you are provided with a list of questions. The first question specifies which parts of the paper you are expected to read, and asks for a general summary. I imagine that an adequate summary will take approximately one half to one full typed, single-spaced page of text, and two pages for each question (1 inch margins and 12 point font). In addition to summarizing the reading in your own words, you should answer each of the other questions–depending on the question, a complete answer may take a sentence or a full paragraph.
1. \What Really Matters in Auction Design” Paul Klemperer, Journal of Economic Perspectives, 2002.
(a) Read the entire paper, and write your own summary.
(b) List some drawbacks and some advantages of ascending auctions, from a practical auction design perspective.
(c) List some drawbacks and some advantages of sealed-bid auctions, from a practical auction design perspective.
(d) Describe the Anglo-Dutch auction rules.
(e) In what circumstances will the design of an auction be less important?
2. \Field Experiments on the Effects of Reserve Prices in Auctions: More Magic on the Internet” David Reiley, RAND Journal of Economics, Spring 2006, vol. 37, no. 1, pp. 195-211.
(a) Read the entire paper and write your own summary.
(b) What question(s) was the experiment designed to answer?
(c) Describe the set-up of the experiment – the number of treatments, the auction rules and other procedures, etc.
(d) What is a variable that could not be controlled in this experiment?
(e) Explain the meaning of the “Cloister” price to which the article refers. Why did this value matter?
(f) Describe the conclusions regarding the effect of reserve prices on the probability of sale, on auction revenue, and on bidder strategy. Identify whether the experiment results support theoretical predictions.
3. \Running Up the Bid: Detecting, Predicting, and Preventing Reserve Price Shilling
in Online Auctions” John H. Kagel and Dan Levin, The Economic Journal, 103 (July
(a) Read pages 1-21 and pages 31-34, and write your own summary.
(b) Explain why online auctions might be especially prone to seller fraud such as shill bidding.
(c) Define the two types of shilling mentioned in the article.
(d) List the reasons that sellers using online auction houses might be tempted to shill bid.
(e) Explain the reasoning behind the study’s five research hypotheses.
(f) Explain the limitations of this study.