Constructing Preferences in the Physical World: A Distributed-Cognition Perspective on Preferences and Risky Choices

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Villejoubert, Gaëlle ; Vallée-Tourangeau, Frédéric (2011)
  • Publisher: Frontiers Research Foundation
  • Journal: Frontiers in Psychology, volume 2 (issn: 1664-1078, eissn: 1664-1078)
  • Related identifiers: pmc: PMC3216023, doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2011.00302
  • Subject: Opinion Article | Psychology

Psychological research has firmly established that risk preferences are transient states shaped by past experiences, current knowledge, and feelings as well as the characteristics of the decision environment. We begin this article with a brief review of evidence supporting this conception as well as different psychological theories explaining how preferences are constructed. Next, we introduce the distributed perspective on human cognition and show how it may offer a promising framework for unifying seemingly incompatible accounts. We conclude by suggesting new directions for better capturing the essence of preference construction in laboratory research.
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