Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Hindsight bias redefined: It's about time

Contents:

Author Info

  • Fessel, Florian
  • Epstude, Kai
  • Roese, Neal J.
Registered author(s):

    Abstract

    Four experiments introduced a new conceptual and methodological approach to hindsight bias, traditionally defined as the tendency to exaggerate the a priori predictability of outcomes after they become known. By examining likelihood estimates rooted to specific time points during an unfolding event sequence (videos and short text stories), judged both in foresight and hindsight, we conceptualized hindsight bias as a contrast between two "inevitability curves," which plotted likelihood against time. Taking timing into account, we defined three new indicators of accuracy: linear accuracy (how well hindsight judgments capture the linear trend of foresight judgments over time), rate accuracy (how well hindsight judgments reflect the slope of foresight judgments over time), and temporal accuracy (how well hindsight judgments specify the overall timing of the full envelope of foresight judgments). Results demonstrated that hindsight judgments showed linear and rate accuracy, but were biased only in terms of lack of temporal accuracy. The oft-used catchphrase "knew it all along effect" was found to be a misnomer, in that participants were well aware in hindsight that their earlier foresight judgments reflected uncertainty. The current research therefore points to one way in which retrospective judgments can be considered biased, yet simultaneously suggests that considerable accuracy exists when people render such judgments.

    Download Info

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6WP2-4WXB50X-1/2/d7b9aa5758177f31f6af2abd5ddb3d96
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes.

    Volume (Year): 110 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 1 (September)
    Pages: 56-64

    as in new window
    Handle: RePEc:eee:jobhdp:v:110:y:2009:i:1:p:56-64

    Contact details of provider:
    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/obhdp

    Related research

    Keywords: Hindsight bias Time Knew it all along effect Likelihood judgment Overconfidence Affective forecasting Bias Temporal perspective;

    References

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
    as in new window
    1. Christensen-Szalanski, Jay J. J. & Willham, Cynthia Fobian, 1991. "The hindsight bias: A meta-analysis," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 147-168, February.
    2. Schkade, David A. & Kilbourne, Lynda M., 1991. "Expectation-outcome consistency and hindsight bias," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 105-123, June.
    3. Müller, Patrick A. & Stahlberg, Dagmar, 2007. "The Role of Surprise in Hindsight Bias – A Metacognitive Model of Reduced and Reversed Hindsight Bias," Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications 07-16, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim;Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim.
    4. Louie, Therese A., 2005. "Hindsight bias and outcome-consistent thoughts when observing and making service provider decisions," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 98(1), pages 88-95, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Lists

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jobhdp:v:110:y:2009:i:1:p:56-64. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei).

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.