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Information, evolution and utility

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Author Info

  • Swinkels, Jeroen M.

    ()
    (Washington University in St. Louis)

  • Samuelson, Larry

    ()
    (University of Wisconsin)

Abstract

Human utility embodies a number of seemingly irrational aspects. The leading example in this paper is that utilities often depend on the presence of salient unchosen alternatives. Our focus is to understand why an evolutionary process might optimally lead to such seemingly dysfunctional features in our motivations and to derive implications for the nature of our utility functions.

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File URL: http://econtheory.org/ojs/index.php/te/article/viewFile/20060119/451/15
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Econometric Society in its journal Theoretical Economics.

Volume (Year): 1 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
Pages: 119-142

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Handle: RePEc:the:publsh:166

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Web page: http://econtheory.org

Related research

Keywords: Evolution; information; internal conflict; self control; temptation; time consistency; utility;

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Cited by:
  1. Christoph March, 2011. "Adaptive social learning," PSE Working Papers halshs-00572528, HAL.
  2. Anton Suvorov & Jeroen van de Ven, 2008. "Goal Setting as a Self-Regulation Mechanism," Working Papers w0122, Center for Economic and Financial Research (CEFIR).
  3. De Fraja, Gianni, 2009. "The origin of utility: Sexual selection and conspicuous consumption," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 51-69, October.
  4. Kalyan Chatterjee & R. Vijay Krishna, 2005. "Menu Choice, Environmental Cues and Temptation: A “Dual Self” Approach to Self-control," Levine's Working Paper Archive 784828000000000576, David K. Levine.
  5. Partha Dasgupta & Eric Maskin, 2005. "Uncertainty and Hyperbolic Discounting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1290-1299, September.
  6. Jeffrey C. Ely, 2011. "Kludged," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(3), pages 210-31, August.
  7. Adriani, Fabrizio & Sonderegger, Silvia, 2009. "Trust, Introspection, and Market Participation: an Evolutionary Approach," MPRA Paper 16110, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  8. Marco Gui & Luca Stanca, 2009. "Television Viewing, Satisfaction and Happiness: Facts and Fiction," Working Papers 167, University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics, revised Jul 2009.
  9. Berg, Nathan & Biele, Guido & Gigerenzer, Gerd, 2010. "Does Consistency Predict Accuracy of Beliefs?: Economists Surveyed About PSA," MPRA Paper 24976, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  10. Nick Vikander, 2011. "Targeted Advertising and Social Status," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 11-016/1, Tinbergen Institute.
  11. Toru Suzuki, 2012. "Complementarity of behavioral biases," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 72(3), pages 413-430, March.

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