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Risk as Feelings

Risk as Feelings Virtually all current theories of choice under risk or uncertaintyare cognitive and consequentialist. They assume that people assess thedesirability and likelihood of possible outcomes of choice alternatives andintegrate this information through some type of expectation-basedcalculus to arrive at a decision. The authors propose an alternativetheoretical perspective, the risk-as-feelingshypothesis, that highlights the role of affect experienced at the momentof decision making. Drawing on research from clinical,physiological, and other subfields of psychology, they show thatemotional reactions to risky situations often diverge from cognitiveassessments of those risks. When such divergence occurs, emotionalreactions often drive behavior. The risk-as-feelingshypothesis is shown to explain a wide range of phenomena that have resistedinterpretation in cognitive–consequentialist terms. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Psychological Bulletin American Psychological Association

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Publisher
American Psychological Association
Copyright
Copyright © 2001 American Psychological Association
ISSN
0033-2909
eISSN
1939-1455
DOI
10.1037/0033-2909.127.2.267
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Virtually all current theories of choice under risk or uncertaintyare cognitive and consequentialist. They assume that people assess thedesirability and likelihood of possible outcomes of choice alternatives andintegrate this information through some type of expectation-basedcalculus to arrive at a decision. The authors propose an alternativetheoretical perspective, the risk-as-feelingshypothesis, that highlights the role of affect experienced at the momentof decision making. Drawing on research from clinical,physiological, and other subfields of psychology, they show thatemotional reactions to risky situations often diverge from cognitiveassessments of those risks. When such divergence occurs, emotionalreactions often drive behavior. The risk-as-feelingshypothesis is shown to explain a wide range of phenomena that have resistedinterpretation in cognitive–consequentialist terms.

Journal

Psychological BulletinAmerican Psychological Association

Published: Mar 1, 2001

References