Do Emotions Help or Hurt Decisionmaking?: A Hedgefoxian Perspective

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Overview

Philosophers have long tussled over whether moral judgments are the products of logical reasoning or simply emotional reactions. From Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility to the debates of modern psychologists, the question of whether feeling or sober rationality is the better guide to decision making has been a source of controversy. In Do Emotions Help or Hurt Decision Making? Kathleen Vohs, Roy Baumeister, and George Loewenstein lead a group of prominent psychologists and economists in exploring the empirical evidence on how emotions shape judgments and choices.

Researchers on emotion and cognition have staked out many extreme positions: viewing emotions as either the driving force behind cognition or its side effect, either an impediment to sound judgment or a guide to wise decisions. The contributors to Do Emotions Help or Hurt Decision Making? provide a richer perspective, exploring the circumstances that shape whether emotions play a harmful or helpful role in decisions. Roy Baumeister, C. Nathan DeWall, and Liqing Zhang show that while an individual’s current emotional state can lead to hasty decisions and self-destructive behavior, anticipating future emotional outcomes can be a helpful guide to making sensible decisions. Eduardo Andrade and Joel Cohen find that a positive mood can negatively affect people’s willingness to act altruistically. Happy people, when made aware of risks associated with altruistic acts, become wary of jeopardizing their own well-being. Benoît Monin, David Pizarro, and Jennifer Beer find that whether emotion or reason matters more in moral evaluation depends on the specific issue in question. Individual characteristics often mediate the effect of emotions on decisions. Catherine Rawn, Nicole Mead, Peter Kerkhof, and Kathleen Vohs find that whether an individual makes a decision based on emotion depends both on the type of decision in question and the individual’s level of self-esteem. And Quinn Kennedy and Mara Mather show that the elderly are better able to regulate their emotions, having learned from experience to anticipate the emotional consequences of their behavior.

Do Emotions Help or Hurt Decision Making? represents a significant advance toward a comprehensive theory of emotions and cognition that accounts for the nuances of the mental processes involved. This landmark book will be a stimulus to scholarly debates as well as an informative guide to everyday decisions.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780871548771
  • Publisher: Russell Sage Foundation
  • Publication date: 12/28/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 366
  • Product dimensions: 6.80 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

KATHLEEN D. VOHS is the McKnight Land-Grant Professor and assistant professor in the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota.

ROY F. BAUMEISTER is the Francis Eppes Eminent Scholar and professor of psychology at Florida State University.

GEORGE LOEWENSTEIN is the Herbert A. Simon Professor of Economics and Psychology at Carnegie Mellon University.

CONTRIBUTORS: Christopher J. Anderson, Eduardo B. Andrade, Roy F. Baumeister, Jennifer S. Beer, Joel B. Cohen, C. Nathan DeWall, Matthew T. Gailliot, Karen Gasper, Lorenz Goette, David Huffman, Linda M. Isbell, Quinn Kennedy, Peter Kerkhof, Jonathan Levav, Debra Lieberman, George Loewenstein, Mara Mather, Nicole L. Mead, Benoît Monin, Robert Oum, David A. Pizarro, Catherine D. Rawn, Dianne M. Tice, Jennifer L. Trujillo, Kathleen D. Vohs, Piotr Winkielman, John M. Zelenski, and Liqing Zhang

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Table of Contents


TABLE OF CONTENTS
OVERVIEWS
0. Introduction: The Hedgefox
Loewenstein, Vohs, and Baumeister
1. Do emotions improve or hinder the decision making process?"
Baumeister, DeWall, and Zhang
INTEGRATIVE FRAMEWORKS
2. Affect-based evaluation and regulation as mediators of behavior: The role of affect in risk taking, helping and eating patterns
Andrade and Cohen
3. Emotional influences on decision and behavior: Stimuli, states and subjectivity
Winkielman and Trujillo
4. Feeling, searching and preparing: How affective states alter information seeking
Gasper and Isbell
5. The role of personality in emotion, judgment and decision making.
Zelenski
6. Emotion is cognition: An information processing view of the mind
Oum and Lieberman
SPECIFIC MECHANISMS
7. The effects of self-esteem and ego threat on decision making
Rawn, Mead, Kerkhof, and Vohs
8. The functions of emotion in decision making and decision avoidance
Anderson
9. Emotion regulation and impulse control: People succumb to their impulses in order to feel better
Gailliot and Tice
APPLICATIONS
10. Reason and emotion in moral judgment: Different prototypes lead to different theories
Monin, Pizarro, and Beer
11. Aging, affect and decision making
Kennedy and Mather
12. Affect as a source of motivation in the workplace: A new model of labor supply, and new field evidence on income targeting and the goal gradient
Goette and Huffman
13. Do emotions improve labor market outcomes?
Goette and Huffman
14. The mind and the body: Subjective well-being in an objective world
Levav
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