Could fMRI data proxy subjective value because of the statistical relationship between Poisson and Conditional Logit? An Observation in Search of a Theory

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2022-01-12
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Crespi, John M.
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Economics

The Department of Economic Science was founded in 1898 to teach economic theory as a truth of industrial life, and was very much concerned with applying economics to business and industry, particularly agriculture. Between 1910 and 1967 it showed the growing influence of other social studies, such as sociology, history, and political science. Today it encompasses the majors of Agricultural Business (preparing for agricultural finance and management), Business Economics, and Economics (for advanced studies in business or economics or for careers in financing, management, insurance, etc).

History
The Department of Economic Science was founded in 1898 under the Division of Industrial Science (later College of Liberal Arts and Sciences); it became co-directed by the Division of Agriculture in 1919. In 1910 it became the Department of Economics and Political Science. In 1913 it became the Department of Applied Economics and Social Science; in 1924 it became the Department of Economics, History, and Sociology; in 1931 it became the Department of Economics and Sociology. In 1967 it became the Department of Economics, and in 2007 it became co-directed by the Colleges of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Liberal Arts and Sciences, and Business.

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1898–present

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  • Department of Economic Science (1898–1910)
  • Department of Economics and Political Science (1910-1913)
  • Department of Applied Economics and Social Science (1913–1924)
  • Department of Economics, History and Sociology (1924–1931)
  • Department of Economics and Sociology (1931–1967)

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Abstract
This proposition uses the statistical relationship between the Poisson distribution and conditional logit to show that in the absence of a direct measure of signal from a neural region of interest, the conditional logit model may be useful to elicit willingness to pay (WTP) and proxy subjective value in a neuroscience experiment. If neurons fire in a Poisson manner then because the Poisson and Conditional Logit likelihood functions are nested, there would seem to be a link between neuron spikes and WTP. One might be able to use measures from fMRI to infer WTP even if one cannot directly measure the neuronal spike activity. This paper is presented as an observation in search of a theory, and there may be obvious reasons it is wrong. I place it in circulation in order to help discovery.
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Original Release Date: January 12, 2022. JEL codes: D87, D91. Length: 11 pages
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