REASON-BASED CHOICE AND CONTEXT-DEPENDENCE: AN EXPLANATORY FRAMEWORK

Citation data:

Economics and Philosophy, ISSN: 0266-2671, Vol: 32, Issue: 02, Page: 175-229

Publication Year:
2016
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Repository URL:
http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/11935
DOI:
10.1017/s0266267115000474
Author(s):
Dietrich, Franz, List, Christian
Publisher(s):
Cambridge University Press (CUP), Cambridge University Press
Tags:
Arts and Humanities, Economics, Econometrics and Finance
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article description
We introduce a 'reason-based' framework for explaining and predicting individual choices. The key idea is that a decision-maker focuses on some but not all properties of the options and chooses an option whose 'motivationally salient' properties he/she most prefers. Reason-based explanations can capture two kinds of context-dependent choice: (i) the motivationally salient properties may vary across choice contexts, and (ii) they may include 'context-related' properties, not just 'intrinsic' properties of the options. Our framework allows us to explain boundedly rational and sophisticated choice behaviour. Since properties can be recombined in new ways, it also offers resources for predicting choices in unobserved contexts.

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