The Most Influential Age Hypothesis: Does the Self Cause Predictable Preferences?
University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - Rady School of Management
University of Toronto - Joseph L. Rotman School of Management
An ongoing debate revolves around the assumption of preference stability. We investigate the hypothesis that certain preferences do indeed remain stable and propose that preferences formed in early adulthood are likely to remain stable because of an increased likelihood of relating to people's identity. We present evidence from three studies showing that experts (Study 1) as well as lay people (Study 2) have very strong preferences for movies they have seen as early adults. In addition we show that (Study3) preferences closely tied to one's identity at early adulthood (e.g., clothes) are more persistent than those less closely tied to one's identity at that age (e.g., cars).
Number of Pages in PDF File: 20
Keywords: Preferences, Identity, Self
JEL Classification: D00, M3, M31
Date posted: April 14, 2007
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