Goggles in the lab: Economic experiments in immersive virtual environments

Abstract

This review outlines the potential of virtual reality for creating naturalistic and interactive high-immersive environments in experimental economics. After explanation of essential terminology and technical equipment, the advantages are discussed by describing the available high-immersive VR experiments concerning economic topics to give an idea of the possibilities of VR for economic experiments. Furthermore, possible drawbacks are examined, including simulator sickness, the costs of VR equipment and specialist skills. By carefully controlling a naturalistic experimental context, virtual reality brings some field into the lab. Besides, it allows for testing contexts that would otherwise be unethical or impossible. It is a promising new tool in the experimental economics toolkit.

Publication
Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics