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Antonio Penta

Antonio Penta

Universitat Pompeu Fabra

Social & Behavioural Sciences

Antonio Penta is an economic theorist who joined ICREA in October 2018. He is also Professor of Economics at UPF and at the Barcelona School of Economics. Prior to that, he was Assistant Professor (2010-2016) and then tenured Associate Professor (2016-2018) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He graduated in Economics from Bocconi Univ (2004), and then he obtained a M.A. (2008) and a PhD (2010) in economics from the University of Pennsylvania. He is currently member of the Editorial Board of the American Economic Review and of the Review of Economic Studies, Associate Editor of the Journal of Economic Theory and of Theoretical Economics, Associate Faculty at the Toulouse School of Economics, and a member of the TSE Digital Center. In 2017, he was awarded an ERC-Starting Grant from the European Research Council.

Research interests

My research spans a range of areas within game theory, mechanism design, behavioral economics and auction theory. In game theory and mechanism design, most of my research has focused on questions of robustness with respect to various forms of model misspecification. Within behavioral economics, my research has combined experimental methodology and theoretical work, and it has mostly focused on understanding individuals’ reasoning processes, and particularly the interaction between individuals’ cognitve abilities and their incentives. Most recently, I have become interested in the market for online advertisement. My research focuses on the impact of Digital Marketing Agencies on the online ad auction platforms, on agencies’s opportunities to generate surplus for their clients, and on the design of novel auction formats based on direct measures of users’ attention, combining economic theory and datascience.

Selected research activities

Invited Research Seminars:


  • Univ. of Oxford, Dept. Seminar
  • Univ. of Glasgow, Econ. Seminar (online),
  • Collegio Carlo Alberto, Econ. Seminar
  • Univ. of Toronto, Behavioral Econ. Seminar (online),
  • Univ. Carlos III, Microeconomics Seminar
  • Brown Univ., Econ. Theory Seminar (online).
  • Yale Univ., Econ. Theory Seminar (online),
  • Caltech, Econ. Theory Seminar (online)
  • London School of Economics, Econ. Theory Seminar (online),
  • Oxford Univ., Nuffield College LGN Seminar (online),
  • Univ. of Edinburgh, Econ. Theory Seminar (online)
  • CUHK-HKU-HKUST, Hong-Kong joint theory seminar (online)
  • Univ. of Nottingham, CeDEx Seminar (online)

Conferences and Workshops:

  • Economic Theory Workshop, Univ. of Bonn, invited presenter
  • GAMES 2020.1: 6th World Congress of the Game Theory Society (Budapest, Hungary), Semi-Plenary Speaker
  • CalTech, online economic theory seminar, invited discussant
  • Econometric Society European Winter Meeting, Barcelona (Spain), member of the Scientific Committee
  • Econometric Society European Meeting, Copenhagen (Denmark), member of the Scientific Committee
  • Game Theory and Mechanism Design, undergraduate, UPF 
  • Advanced Microeconomics II, Ph.D., BSE
  • Digital Economics, Master, BSE
  • Industrial Organization, Master, BSE
  • Competition in Digital Markets, Executive, BSE

ICREA Memoir 2021