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Cultural neuroeconomics of intertemporal choice

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  • Takahashi, Taiki
  • Hadzibeganovic, Tarik
  • Cannas, Sergio
  • Makino, Takaki
  • Fukui, Hiroki
  • Kitayama, Shinobu

Abstract

According to theories of cultural neuroscience, Westerners and Easterners may have distinct styles of cognition (e.g., different allocation of attention). Previous research has shown that Westerners and Easterners tend to utilize analytical and holistic cognitive styles, respectively. On the other hand, little is known regarding the cultural differences in neuroeconomic behavior. For instance, economic decisions may be affected by cultural differences in neurocomputational processing underlying attention; however, this area of neuroeconomics has been largely understudied. In the present paper, we attempt to bridge this gap by considering the links between the theory of cultural neuroscience and neuroeconomic theory of the role of attention in intertemporal choice. We predict that (i) Westerners are more impulsive and inconsistent in intertemporal choice in comparison to Easterners, and (ii) Westerners more steeply discount delayed monetary losses than Easterners. We examine these predictions by utilizing a novel temporal discounting model based on Tsallis' statistics (i.e. a q-exponential model). Our preliminary analysis of temporal discounting of gains and losses by Americans and Japanese confirmed the predictions from the cultural neuroeconomic theory. Future study directions, employing computational modeling via neural networks, are briefly outlined and discussed.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 16814.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:16814

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Keywords: Cultural neuroscience; neuroeconomics; intertemporal choice; attention allocation; Tsallis’ statistics; neural networks;

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  1. Jane E. J. Ebert & Drazen Prelec, 2007. "The Fragility of Time: Time-Insensitivity and Valuation of the Near and Far Future," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 53(9), pages 1423-1438, September.
  2. Cajueiro, Daniel O., 2006. "A note on the relevance of the q-exponential function in the context of intertemporal choices," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 364(C), pages 385-388.
  3. Read, Daniel & Roelofsma, Peter H. M. P., 2003. "Subadditive versus hyperbolic discounting: A comparison of choice and matching," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 91(2), pages 140-153, July.
  4. Dilip Soman & George Ainslie & Shane Frederick & Xiuping Li & John Lynch & Page Moreau & Andrew Mitchell & Daniel Read & Alan Sawyer & Yaacov Trope & Klaus Wertenbroch & Gal Zauberman, 2005. "The Psychology of Intertemporal Discounting: Why are Distant Events Valued Differently from Proximal Ones?," Marketing Letters, Springer, vol. 16(3), pages 347-360, December.
  5. Tsallis, Constantino & Anteneodo, Celia & Borland, Lisa & Osorio, Roberto, 2003. "Nonextensive statistical mechanics and economics," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 324(1), pages 89-100.
  6. Shane Frederick & George Loewenstein & Ted O'Donoghue, 2002. "Time Discounting and Time Preference: A Critical Review," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(2), pages 351-401, June.
  7. Michael, Fredrick & Johnson, M.D., 2003. "Financial market dynamics," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 320(C), pages 525-534.
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Cited by:
  1. Takahashi, Taiki, 2010. "A social discounting model based on Tsallis’ statistics," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 389(17), pages 3600-3603.
  2. Han, Ruokang & Takahashi, Taiki, 2012. "Psychophysics of time perception and valuation in temporal discounting of gain and loss," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 391(24), pages 6568-6576.

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