Yan Chen (professor)

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Yan Chen (born July 11, 1966) is a Chinese American behavioral and experimental economist. She is Daniel Kahneman Collegiate Professor of Information at the University of Michigan School of Information, research professor in the Research Center for Group Dynamics at the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research, and Distinguished Visiting Professor at the School of Economics and Management at Tsinghua University, where she directs the Economics Science and Policy Experimental Lab. She is a former president of the Economic Science Association, an international organization of experimental economists.[1]

Yan Chen
Born (1966-07-11) July 11, 1966 (age 54)
NationalityUnited States
Alma materCalifornia Institute of Technology
Tsinghua University
AwardsCarolyn Shaw Bell Award, 2019
Scientific career
FieldsExperimental economics
InstitutionsUniversity of Michigan
Shanghai Jiaotong University
Doctoral advisorJohn Ledyard


Chen studied English for Science and Technology as an undergraduate student in China, and became interested in Economics because of the impact of the Chinese economic reform happening around her. Since English majors were not eligible for graduate school in economics in China, she came to the U.S. for graduate school at Caltech. Her first position at the University of Michigan was in the economics department, but she did not receive tenure in that department. Since her husband was a tenured professor of physics at the same university, she wanted to find a position nearby, and she was recruited to a new position on the faculty of the University of Michigan School of Information.[2]

Research interestsEdit

Experimental Economics, Mechanism Design, Information Economics[3]

Selected WorksEdit

  • Chen, Yan, and Sherry Xin Li. "Group identity and social preferences." American Economic Review 99, no. 1 (2009): 431-57.
  • Chen, Roy, and Yan Chen. "The potential of social identity for equilibrium selection." American Economic Review 101, no. 6 (2011): 2562-89.
  • Chen, Yan, F. Maxwell Harper, Joseph Konstan, and Sherry Xin Li. "Social comparisons and contributions to online communities: A field experiment on movielens." American Economic Review 100, no. 4 (2010): 1358-98.
  • Chen, Yan, and Tayfun Sönmez. "School choice: an experimental study." Journal of Economic theory 127, no. 1 (2006): 202-231.
  • Chen, Yan, and Fang-Fang Tang. "Learning and incentive-compatible mechanisms for public goods provision: An experimental study." Journal of Political Economy 106, no. 3 (1998): 633-662.
  • Chen, Yan. "Incentive-compatible mechanisms for pure public goods: A survey of experimental research." Handbook of experimental economics results 1 (2008): 625-643.


  1. ^ "Yan Chen Recipient of the 2019 Carolyn Shaw Bell Award".
  2. ^ Hoffman, Elizabeth (Betsy) (Winter 2020). "Interview with Bell Award Winner Yan Chen". CSWEP News.
  3. ^ "Yan Chen - MCubed". Retrieved 21 June 2016.