Lecture on "The Impact of Temperature on Productivity: Evidence from Online Game Performance"
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Lecture on "The Impact of Temperature on Productivity: Evidence from Online Game Performance"
DateandTime: 2017-04-27 09:31:30

Speaker: Fan Qingliang, Doctor, Department of Economics, Xiamen University

Date: April 27, 2017

Time: 2:30 pm-4:00 pm

Location: 423 Juxian Lecture Hall, Block B, Zhixin Building, Central Campus

Sponsor: the School of Economics 


This paper studies the short-run impacts of temperature on human performance in computer-mediated environment using server logs of a popular online game in China. We measure human performance using gamers' missions accomplished in the game. Taking advantage of the quasi-experiment of central winter heating policy in China, we distinguish the impacts of outdoor and indoor temperature and find that low temperatures below 5 decrease game performance significantly. Casual gamers are affected more by cold than hardcore players. Access to central heating attenuates negative impacts of low outdoor temperatures on gamers’ performance. High temperatures above 21 also decrease gamers' performance.We conclude that expanding the current central heating zone will bring an increase in human performance by approximately 4% in Shanghai-surrounding provinces in the winter. Our results draw attention to potential damages of extreme temperature on human productivity in the modern computer-mediated working environment.


Michael Fan is an Assistant Professor of Economics at the Wang Yanan Institute of Studies in Economics (WISE), Xiamen University, China. He is interested in both theoretical and applied econometrics, with a focus on micro-econometrics in a data-rich environment, and big data. Many of his ongoing research topics relate to labor economics, environmental economics and financial economics.

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Edited by: Shi Yajie 

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