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Crowdfunding campaign launch timing under uncertainty
This paper proposes a decision-making framework for entrepreneurs who are willing to launch their crowdfunding campaign on a crowdfunding platform. In particular, we propose a method, based on real options, for choosing the launch date of the campaign depending on the observed status of the platform. The entrepreneur's objective is to maximize the expected amount of funds she collects on the platform, and this latter depends on the quality of the proposed project, but also on the number and qualities of the concurrent projects during the campaign lifetime. We model the platform state evolution with time using a Markov chain and derive the expected campaign outcome starting from a given status. We then propose a dynamic programming approach that determines the optimal campaign launch time.