Wanying Huang

About me

Hi! I am currently a fourth-year PhD student in economics at California Institute of Technology, advised by Omer Tamuz. I am interested in microeconomic theory, in particular, information and social learning.

Prior to joining Caltech, I graduated from the University of Queensland, Australia (Bachelor of Economics with First Class Honors) in 2018, advised by Priscilla Man and Jeffrey Kline. Prior to that, I studied Economics at Shandong University, China.

Write to my email at: whhuang [at] caltech [dot] edu, or visit me in Baxter Hall, room 210.

You can find my CV here.

Research

  1. "The Emergence of Fads in a Changing World"

    PDF

    We study how fads emerge from social learning in a changing environment. We consider a sequential learning model in which rational agents arrive in order, each acting only once, and the underlying unknown state is constantly evolving. Each agent receives a private signal, observes all past actions of others, and chooses an action to match the current state. Since the state changes over time, cascades cannot last forever, and actions fluctuate too. We show that in the long run, actions change more often than the state. This describes many real-life faddish behaviors in which people often change their actions more frequently than what is necessary.

  2. "Learning in Repeated Interactions on Networks"
    with Philipp Strack and Omer Tamuz, presented at EC'22
    PDF

    We study how long-lived, rational, exponentially discounting agents learn in a social network. In every period, each agent observes the past actions of his neighbors, receives a private signal, and chooses an action with the objective of matching the state. Since agents behave strategically, and since their actions depend on higher order beliefs, it is difficult to characterize equilibrium behavior. Nevertheless, we show that regardless of the size and shape of the network, and the patience of the agents, the speed of learning in any equilibrium is bounded from above by a constant that only depends on the private signal distribution.