Anton Wrisberg: Do positive attributes aid decision makers?
Do positive attributes aid decision makers?
I will present an experiment to test the hypothesis that it is easier for decision makers to make decisions between alternatives when attributes are positive than when attributes are negative. As far as I know, this has not been done before. I suggest that perceived prevalence and subjective preference for attributes attenuate this effect, not only helping decision makers choose between alternatives, but aiding them reach a decision too. To do so, this experiment proposal bridges concept formation with decision making through probabilistic preferences and diagnosticity conceptualised as uncertainty reduction in evidence accumulation models. In the following, I will situate this research in the current debate. Then I will present my main hypothesis and how conceptualisations of uncertainty in binary choice as either entropy or variance can account for the effects of perceived prevalence of the attribute and subjective preference for it. Lastly, I propose an experiment to test these hypotheses and outline the implications of alternative results. It is not a prerequisite to read the attached draft, but I appreciate any input. If you are short on time, skip the introduction and head straight to the hypotheses. I look forward to your comments!