The Routines of Decision Making

The Routines of Decision Making

The Routines of Decision Making

The Routines of Decision Making

Synopsis

Experience is currently a hot theme in decision making. For a long time, decision research was almost exclusively focused on new decisions and neglected the importance of experience. It took the field until the 1990s for a new direction in research and theorizing to become visible in the literature. There are parallel movements happening in sociology, political science, social psychology, and business. The purpose of this edited book is to provide a balanced and representative overview of what is currently known about the dynamics of experienced-based decision making. The chapters are written by renowned experts of the field and provide the latest theoretical developments, integrative frameworks, and state-of-the-art reviews of research in the laboratory and in the field.

Excerpt

Over the course of a lifetime, human beings make countless decisions, most of which are repeated decisions. In repetitive decision making, individuals can rely on their prior knowledge and experiences. Experience helps the decision makers cope with the complexity of the real world. Consider, for instance, product decisions: Malls, catalogue companies, Internet auctions, and other types of markets offer consumers a virtually infinite set of possibilities to satisfy their needs. Fortunately, adult decision makers already know a lot about groceries, clothes, household devices, computers, TVs, or automobiles. They already hold preferences for certain brands, they can rely on advice from friends and consumer magazines, and, most important, they have a huge repertoire of behavioral routines.

Development of routines allows decision makers to maintain mastery of the situation (Athay & Darley, 1981). Once a behavioral solution to a decision problem has been learned and stored in memory, individuals can use this knowledge when they reencounter the same kind of problem. Under situational and processing constraints, routinization enables individuals to quickly arrive at a decision.

Memory and learning processes have been largely neglected in psychological decision research (Weber, Goldstein, & Busemeyer, 1991). Other disciplines, such as economic game theory and behavioral economics, devoted much more attention to the relationship among prior behavior, learning, and decision making (Foxall, 2003; Harsanyi, 1967/1968; Nash, 1951; Selten, 1965; for recent developments, see e.g., Erev & Roth, 1998). By contrast, cognitive psychologists primarily studied decision making in oneshot, novel situations. Until the late 1980s, studies on recurrent decisions . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.