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Emotional skills: The role of emotional intelligence for strategic interactions and markets

Project description

A foundation to study emotional skills

Emotional skills are widely believed to be crucial for understanding and managing emotions, especially in collaborative workplaces and strategic interactions. However, research on emotional intelligence in economic interactions is limited and lacks frameworks and tools to fully comprehend its impact. To address this gap, the EU-funded EMOSKILLS project aims to develop a new methodology and tools to investigate specific emotional skills and their effects. The project will design a new skills test and experiments to facilitate studies on emotional skills’ influence. By integrating insights from psychology, economics and management, EMOSKILLS seeks to enhance research on emotional intelligence and its role in strategic interactions and markets.


Emotional intelligence, like anticipating the emotions of others and regulating one’s own emotions, is thought to be a crucial skill to do well in the workplace. This may be especially true for strategic interactions relevant for the workplace such as cooperation, bargaining, and market interactions. From experimental studies, we know that emotions play an important role in these interactions. Yet, whether or how emotional skills influence strategic interactions is unknown. Economists and other scholars currently lack the tools and framework to systematically study the role of emotional skills in strategic settings. While we have a good understanding of other key elements of strategic interactions like social preferences and strategic reasoning, no such investigation exists for emotional skills. The goal of this project is to provide the foundation to jumpstart the study of emotional skills in strategic interactions and markets. Specifically, this project addresses three main objectives. First, I will develop a new emotional skills test, specifically designed to study the role of emotional skills in strategic interactions. Second, the newly developed test allows me to experimentally investigate how emotional skills shape outcomes and decisions in strategic interactions and markets. Third, I will study the supply of emotional labor – the requirement that workers have to display certain emotions on the job that may mismatch their own – which is associated with considerable psychological costs. Despite its importance for labor markets, evidence on the economics of emotional labor is lacking. I will include emotional labor in standard economic models and develop a new experimental paradigm to estimate the supply of emotional labor. This project will synthesize insights from psychology and management with methods of experimental economics and will provide the experimental tools and paradigms to study emotional intelligence in strategic interactions and markets.

Host institution

Net EU contribution
€ 1 396 643,75
5037 AB Tilburg

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Zuid-Nederland Noord-Brabant Midden-Noord-Brabant
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 1 396 644,00

Beneficiaries (1)