I'm Jeff Butler.


Behavioral Economist at the University of California, Merced.


I am an associate professor in the department of economics and a faculty affiliate with the graduate program in cognitive science at the University of California, Merced. Prior to arriving at UC Merced in 2017, I was an assistant professor at Louisiana State University, a visiting lecturer at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and an assistant professor at the Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance in Rome, Italy. My research interests lie at the intersection of economics, sociology and psychology. My current research investigates the interactions between identity, culture, social environment, preferences and outcomes with a particular focus on how experienced inequality affects beliefs, values, trust, aspirations and behavior.

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  • Publications
  • Past Performance and Entry in Procurement: an experimental investigation (2020, with Enrica Carbone, Pierluigi Conzo and Giancarlo Spagnolo). Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, vol. 173: pp. 179-195. [Working paper] [Published version]
  • Motivating Whistleblowers (2020, with Giancarlo Spagnolo and Danila Serra). Management Science, vol. 66(2): pp. 605-621. [Working paper] [Published version]
  • Strategies to Customize Responsible Gambling Messages (2018, with Brett Abarbanel, Sally Gainsbury and Kahlil Philander). BMC Public Health, vol. 18:1381. [Working paper] [Published version]
  • Social Risk and the Dimensionality of Intentions, (2018, with Joshua B. Miller). Management Science, vol. 64(6): pp. 2787-2796. [Working paper] [Published version]
  • Identity and the Theory of the Firm (2018) in The Handbook of Behavioral Industrial Organization Tremblay, Schroeder and Tremblay (eds), Edward Elgar Publishing, pp. 224-253. [Working paper]
  • The Right Amount of Trust (2016, with Luigi Guiso and Paola Giuliano). Journal of the European Economic Association vol 14(5), pp. 1155-1180. [Working paper] [Published version]
  • A Review of Experimenting with Social Norms: Fairness and Punishment in Cross-Cultural Perspective, Jean Ensminger and Joseph Henrich (eds.) (2016). Journal of Economic Literature vol 53(2), pp. 379-381. [Working paper] [Published version]
  • Trust and Cheating (2016, with Luigi Guiso and Paola Giuliano). The Economic Journal vol 126, pp. 1703-1738. [Working paper] [Published version]
  • Inequality and Relative Ability Beliefs (2016). The Economic Journal vol 126, pp. 907-948. [Working paper] [Published version]
  • A Teaching Intervention that Increases Underserved College Students’ Success: Research Findings from the Transparency and Problem-centered Learning Project (2016, with Mary-Ann Winkelmes, Tia McNair, Ashley Finley, Matthew Bernacki, Michelle Zochowski, Jennifer Golanics and Kati Harriss Weavil). Peer Review vol 18(1/2), pp. 31-36. [Published version]
  • Trust, Values and False Consensus (2015, with Luigi Guiso and Paola Giuliano). International Economic Review vol 56(3), pp. 889-915. [Working paper] [Published version]
  • The Role of Intuition and Reasoning in Driving Aversion to Risk and Ambiguity (2014, with Luigi Guiso and Tullio Japelli). Theory and Decision vol 77(4), pp. 455-484. [Working paper] [Published version]
  • Trust, Truth, Status and Identity: an experimental inquiry (2014). The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics vol 14(1), pp. 293-338. [Working paper] [Published version]

Contact Me

Email: jbutler6@ucmerced.edu