The impact of psychological traits on performance in sequential tournaments: Evidence from a tennis field experiment

Christoph Bühren, Philip Steinberg

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    7 Citations (Scopus)
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    Abstract

    Extant research has analyzed the impact of player position (first- versus second-mover) on individual performance in sequential tournaments. However, it remains unclear whether the first- or second-mover experiences an advantage in such tournaments. We argue that prior literature has ignored heterogeneity of psychological traits and incentive schemes. We conducted a tennis field experiment using the ABBA sequence, in which we do not find a first- or second-mover advantage on game level. However, on shot level (taking into account single moves) we observe, on average, a second-mover advantage. Analyzing the impact of psychological traits, we find that subjects with high self-esteem faced a second-mover advantage whereas subjects with low self-esteem faced a first-mover advantage on shot level. We do not observe significant moderating influences of individual, team, or tournament incentive schemes.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)12-29
    Number of pages18
    JournalJournal of Economic Psychology
    Volume72
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Jun-2019

    Keywords

    • Performance under pressure
    • experiment
    • psychological traits
    • second-mover advantage
    • sequential tournaments
    • TENNIS
    • theory of core self-evaluation
    • COMPETITIVE ENVIRONMENTS EVIDENCE
    • GENERAL SELF-EFFICACY
    • JOB-SATISFACTION
    • CONTEST THEORY
    • PRESSURE
    • CHOKING
    • ESTEEM
    • LOCUS
    • DETERMINANTS
    • INCENTIVES

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