Contingent Reliance on the Affect Heuristic as a Function of Regulatory Focus
21 Pages Posted: 10 Oct 2007 Last revised: 20 Aug 2011
Date Written: October 10, 2008
Results from four studies show that the reliance on affect as a heuristic of judgment and decision-making is more pronounced under a promotion focus than under a prevention focus. Two different manifestations of this phenomenon were observed. Studies 1-3 show that different types of affective inputs are weighted more heavily under promotion than under prevention in person-impression formation, product evaluations, and social recommendations. Study 4 additionally shows that valuations performed under promotion are more scope-insensitive-a characteristic of affect-based valuations-than valuations performed under prevention. The greater reliance on affect as a heuristic under promotion seems to arise because promotion-focused individuals tend to find affective inputs more diagnostic, not because promotion increases the reliance on peripheral information per se.
Keywords: affect, emotion, feelings, affect heuristic, judgment, decision making, regulatory- focus, scope-sensitivity, heuristics, and biases
JEL Classification: M31, M32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation