On Feelings as a Heuristic for Making Offers in Ultimatum Negotiations

24 Pages Posted: 9 May 2008 Last revised: 20 Aug 2011

See all articles by Andrew T. Stephen

Andrew T. Stephen

University of Oxford - Said Business School

Michel Tuan Pham

Columbia University - Columbia Business School; Columbia Business School - Marketing

Date Written: October 2008

Abstract

This research examines how the reliance on emotional feelings as a heuristic influences the proposal of offers in negotiations. Results from three experiments based on the classic ultimatum game show that, compared to proposers who do not rely on their feelings, proposers who rely on their feelings make less generous offers in the standard ultimatum game, more generous offers in a variant of the game allowing responders to make counteroffers, and less generous offers in the dictator game where no responses are allowed. Reliance on feelings triggers a more literal form of play, whereby proposers focus more on how they feel toward the offers themselves than on how they feel toward the possible outcomes of these offers, as if their offers were the final outcomes. Proposers relying on their feelings also tend to focus on gist-based, simpler construals of negotiations that capture only the essential aspects of the situation.

Keywords: affect, emotions, heuristics, bargaining, ultimatum game, affect as information, affect heuristic, trust in feelings

JEL Classification: A12, A13, C70, D11, D81, D83, D71

Suggested Citation

Stephen, Andrew T. and Pham, Michel Tuan, On Feelings as a Heuristic for Making Offers in Ultimatum Negotiations (October 2008). Psychological Science, Vol. 19, No. 10, pp. 1051-1058, 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1131083

Andrew T. Stephen (Contact Author)

University of Oxford - Said Business School ( email )

Park End Street
Oxford, OX1 1HP
Great Britain

Michel Tuan Pham

Columbia University - Columbia Business School ( email )

3022 Broadway
515 Uris
New York, NY 10027
United States
212-854-3472 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.columbia.edu/~tdp4/

Columbia Business School - Marketing ( email )

3022 Broadway
515 Uris
New York, NY NY 10027
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.columbia.edu/~tdp4/

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