Daily Horizons: Evidence of Narrow Bracketing in Judgment from 10 Years of MBA-Admission Interviews

18 Pages Posted: 31 May 2012  

Uri Simonsohn

Ramon Llull University - ESADE Business School

Francesca Gino

Harvard Business School

Date Written: May 22, 2012

Abstract

Many professionals, from auditors and lawyers, to clinical psychologists and journal editors, divide continuous flows of judgments into subsets. College admissions interviewers, for instance, evaluate but a handful of applicants a day. We conjectured that in such situations individuals engage in narrow bracketing, assessing each subset in isolation, and then avoid deviating much – for any given subset – from the expected overall distribution of judgments. For instance, an interviewer who has already highly recommended three applicants on a given day may be reluctant to do so for a fourth applicant. Data from over 9000 MBA interviews supported this prediction. Auxiliary analyses suggest that contrast effects and non-random scheduling of interviews are unlikely alternative explanations.

Keywords: Judgment, decision making, interviews, narrow bracketing, choice

Suggested Citation

Simonsohn, Uri and Gino, Francesca, Daily Horizons: Evidence of Narrow Bracketing in Judgment from 10 Years of MBA-Admission Interviews (May 22, 2012). Psychological Science, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2070623

Uri Simonsohn (Contact Author)

Ramon Llull University - ESADE Business School ( email )

Avinguda de la Torre Blanca, 59
Sant Cugat del Vallès, 08172
Spain

HOME PAGE: http://urisohn.com

Francesca Gino

Harvard Business School ( email )

Soldiers Field Road
Morgan 270C
Boston, MA 02163
United States

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