Intuitive Theories of Cognition on Affect and Risk Preferences

Dogukan Demircioglu, Chris Dawson, Samuel G. B. Johnson

Research output: Chapter or section in a book/report/conference proceedingChapter in a published conference proceeding

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Though it is well-understood that beliefs about future emotions (affective forecasting) influence decision-making, less is known about where these forecasts come from. Here, we investigate how intuitive theories of cognition (cognitive forecasting) influence affective forecasts and, consequently, risk preferences. We found that forecasts of cognitive states—expectations, attention, and information-seeking—are linked to affective forecasts and risk preferences (Study 1). There was great diversity in people's intuitive theories of cognition: One subgroup associated attention and information-seeking with positive emotions for optimists but negative emotions for pessimists, and therefore predicted greater risk-seeking in optimists but not pessimists; the other large subgroup consistently perceived forecasted attention and information-seeking as affectively negative (Studies 2a-b). These results connect behavioral economics and cognitive science by exploring how metacognitive intuitions influence our preferences.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2024

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