*A space between the first name and last name, please enter

YAMADA Katsunori


FacultyDepartment of Economics / Graduate School of Economics
PositionAssociate Professor
Commentator Guide
Last Updated :2020/09/01

Education and Career


  •   1996 04  - 2000 03 , Kyoto University, Department of Economics
  •   2001 04  - 2006 03 , Kyoto University, Graduate School of Economics

Academic & Professional Experience

  •   2014 04 ,  - 現在, Associate Professor, Faculty of Economics, Kindai University
  •   2011 04 ,  - 2014 03 , The Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University
  •   2013 08 ,  - 2013 11 , Academia Sinica
  •   2012 11 ,  - 2013 07 , Visiting researcher, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona
  •   2008 10 ,  - 2011 03 , The Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University
  •   2010 10 ,  - 2010 10 , Visiting researcher, Paris School of Economics
  •   2006 04 ,  - 2008 09 , Graduate School of Economics, Osaka University
  •   2000 04 ,  - 2000 12 , Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi

Research Activities

Research Areas

  • Humanities & social sciences, Economic policy
  • Life sciences, Neuroscience - general

Research Interests

  • Neuro economics

Published Papers

  • Pronoun Drop and Prosocial Behavior: Experimental Evidence from Japan, He, T, J. Riyanto, S. C. Tanaka, K. Yamada, Journal of the Economic Science Association, Journal of the Economic Science Association, Forthcoming, 2020 , Refereed
  • The Joneses in Japan: Income Comparisons and Financial Satisfaction, Clark A, C. Senik, K. Yamada, Japanese Economic Review, Japanese Economic Review, Forthcoming, 2020 , Refereed
  • Income-comparison Attitudes in the US and the UK: Evidence from Discrete-choice Experiments, Shigeoka, H, K. Yamada, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 164, 414 - 438, Aug. 2019 , Refereed
  • Difference or Ratio: Implications of Status Preference on Stagnation, Ono, Y, K. Yamada, Australian Economic Papers, Australian Economic Papers, 57(3), 346 - 362, Jul. 2018 , Refereed
  • Misperception of economics terms; evidence from a choice experiment in Japan, Jung, S, Y. Nakamoto, M. Sato, K. Yamada, International Journal of Applied Behavioral Economics, International Journal of Applied Behavioral Economics, 7(2), 2018 , Refereed
  • A Role of public finance in the Ghatak and Jiang model a comment, Katsunori Yamada, Economics Bulletin, Economics Bulletin, 4(38), 1 - 10, 2006 , Refereed
  • Satisfaction and Comparison Income in Japan: evidence from data of Japanese union workers, Takashi Saito, Atsushi Sannabe, Katsunori Yamada, Economics Bulletin, Economics Bulletin, 4(17), 1 - 20, 2006 , Refereed
  • Public versus Private Education in an Endogenous Growth Model with Social Status, Katsunori Yamada, Economics Bulletin, Economics Bulletin, 15(11), 1 - 9, 2005 , Refereed
  • When experienced and decision utility concur: The case of income comparisons, Andrew E. Clark, Claudia Senik, Katsunori Yamada, JOURNAL OF BEHAVIORAL AND EXPERIMENTAL ECONOMICS, JOURNAL OF BEHAVIORAL AND EXPERIMENTAL ECONOMICS, 70, 1 - 9, Oct. 2017 , Refereed
    Summary:While there is now something of a consensus in the economics of happiness literature that income comparisons to others help determine subjective well-being, debate continues over the relative importance of own and reference-group income, in particular in research on the Easterlin paradox. The variety of results in this domain have produced some scepticism regarding happiness analysis, and in particular with respect to the measurement of reference-group income. We here use data from an original Internet survey in Japan to compare the relative-income results from happiness regressions to those from hypothetical-choice experiments. This kind of validation of experienced utility via direct comparison with decision utility remains rare in this literature. (C) 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    Summary:Considering the case of the Great East Japan Earthquake, we use the experienced-utility approach to appraise the psychological distress from disaster-related news. We take advantage of the serendipitous timing of our original nationwide weekly panel survey that became a fitting resource for the investigation of subjective well-being in the immediate aftermath of the earthquake. Although all of Japanese society was affected, we found geographical heterogeneity between the affected areas (Sendai and Tokyo) and the unaffected areas in terms of mental costs. Our finding reminds us of the focusing effect (Kahneman et al., 2006; Dolan and Kahneman, 2008) as captured by Schkade and Kahneman (1998) in the maxim "Nothing in life is quite as important as you think it is while you are thinking about it".
  • Overstatement in happiness reporting with ordinal, bounded scale, Saori C. Tanaka, Katsunori Yamada, Ryo Kitada, Satoshi Tanaka, Sho K. Sugawara, Fumio Ohtake, Norihiro Sadato, SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, 6(21321), 1 - 8, Feb. 2016 , Refereed
    Summary:There are various methods by which people can express subjective evaluations quantitatively. For example, happiness can be measured on a scale from 1 to 10, and has been suggested as a measure of economic policy. However, there is resistance to these types of measurement from economists, who often regard welfare to be a cardinal, unbounded quantity. It is unclear whether there are differences between subjective evaluation reported on ordinal, bounded scales and on cardinal, unbounded scales. To answer this question, we developed functional magnetic resonance imaging experimental tasks for reporting happiness from monetary gain and the perception of visual stimulus. Subjects tended to report higher values when they used ordinal scales instead of cardinal scales. There were differences in neural activation between ordinal and cardinal reporting scales. The posterior parietal area showed greater activation when subjects used an ordinal scale instead of a cardinal scale. Importantly, the striatum exhibited greater activation when asked to report happiness on an ordinal scale than when asked to report on a cardinal scale. The finding that ordinal (bounded) scales are associated with higher reported happiness and greater activation in the reward system shows that overstatement bias in happiness data must be considered.
  • Caste Comparisons in India: Evidence From Subjective Well-Being Data, Xavier Fontaine, Katsunori Yamada, WORLD DEVELOPMENT, WORLD DEVELOPMENT, 64, 407 - 419, Dec. 2014 , Refereed
    Summary:This paper evaluates how caste influences economic comparisons in India. Using happiness data from an original panel survey, we find that both within-caste comparisons and between-caste comparisons reduce well-being. Between-caste comparisons reduce well-being three times more than within-caste comparisons. In absolute terms, an increase in rival caste expenditures affects well-being as much as primary expenditure. These findings highlight the strong influence that comparisons between rival castes have on well-being. Yet this comparison scheme turns out to be asymmetrical: only low-caste individuals are affected by the economic successes of their rivals, whereas only higher-caste individuals compete with their fellows. (C) 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
  • Neural Mechanisms of Gain-Loss Asymmetry in Temporal Discounting, Saori C. Tanaka, Katsunori Yamada, Hiroyasu Yoneda, Fumio Ohtake, JOURNAL OF NEUROSCIENCE, JOURNAL OF NEUROSCIENCE, 34(16), 5595 - 5602, Apr. 2014 , Refereed
    Summary:Humans typically discount future gains more than losses. This phenomenon is referred to as the "sign effect" in experimental and behavioral economics. Although recent studies have reported associations between the sign effect and important social problems, such as obesity and incurring multiple debts, the biological basis for this phenomenon remains poorly understood. Here, we hypothesized that enhanced loss-related neural processing in magnitude and/or delay representation are causes of the sign effect. We examined participants performing intertemporal choice tasks involving future gains or losses and compared the brain activity of those who exhibited the sign effect and those who did not. When predicting future losses, significant differences were apparent between the two participant groups in terms of striatal activity representing delay length and in insular activity representing sensitivity to magnitude. Furthermore, participants with the sign effect exhibited a greater insular response to the magnitude of loss than to that of gain, and also a greater striatal response to the delay of loss than to that of gain. These findings may provide a new biological perspective for the development of novel treatments and preventive measures for social problems associated with the sign effect.
  • EDUCATION, INNOVATION AND LONG-RUN GROWTH, Katsuhiko Hori, Katsunori Yamada, JAPANESE ECONOMIC REVIEW, JAPANESE ECONOMIC REVIEW, 64(3), 295 - 318, Sep. 2013 , Refereed
    Summary:We extend a second-generation Schumpeterian growth model to incorporate human capital accumulation to clarify the general equilibrium effects of subsidy policies on human capital accumulation and R&D activities in a unified framework. Despite the conventional argument that subsidies always stimulate these growth-promoting activities, we find that subsidies asymmetrically affect human capital accumulation and R&D activities. Our theoretical results suggest that research using standard models of human capital might find false negative relationships between education subsidies and economic growth.
  • Another avenue for anatomy of income comparisons: Evidence from hypothetical choice experiments, Katsunori Yamada, Masayuki Sato, JOURNAL OF ECONOMIC BEHAVIOR & ORGANIZATION, JOURNAL OF ECONOMIC BEHAVIOR & ORGANIZATION, 89(C), 35 - 57, May 2013 , Refereed
    Summary:We propose a new avenue for studying income comparisons effects, namely hypothetical discrete choice experiments in which respondents are presented with alternative combinations of hypothetical monthly income amounts, both for themselves and certain reference persons. With this experimental method we can avoid the problems associated with researcher-imposed reference persons' incomes that are found in most of the happiness studies testing comparison effects. This approach allows investigation of the differences in comparison effects across types of reference groups as well as respondents' individual characteristics, including specific comparison benchmarks, which are the main open questions in the literature. Some results from our original, large-scale, Internet-based survey are provided. (C) 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
  • A numerical study on assessing sustainable development with future genuine savings simulation, Masayuki Sato, Sovannroeun Samreth, Katsunori Yamada, International Journal of Sustainable Development, International Journal of Sustainable Development, 15(4), 293 - 312, Oct. 2012 , Refereed
    Summary:This paper presents a numerical examination of sustainability from the perspective of 'genuine savings', using a dataset provided by the World Bank. Unlike previously-used criteria of sustainability that focus on observed paths of genuine savings rates, we consider future sustainability by simulating future paths of genuine savings. This analysis shows that some countries that had been classified as being sustainable by previous studies, using observed paths, are in fact, not sustainable from the perspective of future sustainability. We provide information on capital components which should be targeted by policy makers in order to maintain future sustainability. Copyright © 2012 Inderscience Enterprises Ltd.
  • Japan's intangible capital and valuation of corporations in a neoclassical framework, Hiroki Arato, Katsunori Yamada, REVIEW OF ECONOMIC DYNAMICS, REVIEW OF ECONOMIC DYNAMICS, 15(4), 459 - 478, Oct. 2012 , Refereed
    Summary:This paper estimates the economic value in the 1980s and 1990s of corporate assets in Japan, including both tangible and intangible assets, based on the neoclassical framework of McGrattan and Prescott (2005). Our estimates use a new micro-data set that comprises the accounting statements of all listed, non-financial companies in Japan. We find that in 1980-1986, a period that immediately preceded Japan's so-called "bubble economy", our assessed value of corporate productive assets, net of the value of corporate debt, is approximately equal to the actual stock market value of Japanese corporate equity. The finding differs from previous results based on studies of aggregate data sets or based on studies of micro-data sets that neglected intangible capital. We also show that the Japanese ratio of the amount of intangible capital stock to the amount of tangible capital stock is comparable to the analogous ratios for the U.S. and U.K. (C) 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
  • Macroeconomic implications of conspicuous consumption: A Sombartian dynamic model, Katsunori Yamada, JOURNAL OF ECONOMIC BEHAVIOR & ORGANIZATION, JOURNAL OF ECONOMIC BEHAVIOR & ORGANIZATION, 67(1), 322 - 337, Jul. 2008 , Refereed
    Summary:This paper presents a dynamic general equilibrium model in which consumers have status preference. I investigate the manner in which capital accumulation is impeded by conspicuous consumption ala Comeo and Jeanne [Corneo, G., Jeanne, 0., 1997a. Conspicuous consumption, snobbism and conformism. Journal of Public Economics 66, 55-71]. Following the literature, social norms are given as either bandwagon type or snob type. I show that when the economy is characterized by a bandwagon type social norm, capital accumulation exhibits interesting patterns. Those patterns include, for example, an oscillating convergence path: the rise of the economy feeds its decay through conspicuous consumption and that decay suppresses conspicuous consumption and engenders prosperity, as predicted by Sombart [Sombart, W., 1912. Liebe, Luxus und Kapitalismus, Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag, Germany (reprinted 1967)]. (C) 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


  • Social Preference: Measurement Issues, Interventions, and Its Origin, Katsunori Yamada, Kavli Frontier of Science,   2016 12 ,

Awards & Honors

  •   2013 07 , Osaka University, Presidential Awards for Encouragement