IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/jeborg/v189y2021icp298-319.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Searching to avoid regret: An experimental evidence

Author

Listed:
  • Jhunjhunwala, Tanushree

Abstract

When faced with many options, individuals generally gather information prior to choosing. In this study, I identify the role of post-decision feedback on quality of missed alternatives, which can induce regret in decision-making, to explain the extent to which people would search. I isolate the effect of feedback on search levels cleanly by means of an abstract lab experiment set in a sequential search environment. The feedback levels vary across treatments. I find that individuals not only have higher reservation values that lead them to sample more options in the presence of this regret-inducing feedback, but their reservation values also decline less slowly over time in the presence of said feedback. Thus, the presence of feedback on forgone alternatives induces decision-makers to exhibit higher search intensities, indicating the important role played by regret aversion in search environments.

Suggested Citation

  • Jhunjhunwala, Tanushree, 2021. "Searching to avoid regret: An experimental evidence," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 189(C), pages 298-319.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:189:y:2021:i:c:p:298-319
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2021.06.036
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0167268121002754
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1016/j.jebo.2021.06.036?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Sugden, Robert & Wang, Mengjie & Zizzo, Daniel John, 2019. "Take it or leave it: Experimental evidence on the effect of time-limited offers on consumer behaviour," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 168(C), pages 1-23.
    2. Sonnemans, Joep, 1998. "Strategies of search," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 309-332, April.
    3. Reb, Jochen, 2008. "Regret aversion and decision process quality: Effects of regret salience on decision process carefulness," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 105(2), pages 169-182, March.
    4. Bikhchandani, Sushil & Sharma, Sunil, 1996. "Optimal search with learning," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 20(1-3), pages 333-359.
    5. Loomes, Graham & Sugden, Robert, 1982. "Regret Theory: An Alternative Theory of Rational Choice under Uncertainty," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 92(368), pages 805-824, December.
    6. Kogut, Carl A., 1990. "Consumer search behavior and sunk costs," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 381-392, December.
    7. Zeelenberg, Marcel & Pieters, Rik, 2004. "Consequences of regret aversion in real life: The case of the Dutch postcode lottery," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 93(2), pages 155-168, March.
    8. Philipp Strack & Paul Viefers, 2021. "Too Proud to Stop: Regret in Dynamic Decisions," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 19(1), pages 165-199.
    9. Rami Zwick & Amnon Rapoport & Alison King Chung Lo & A. V. Muthukrishnan, 2003. "Consumer Sequential Search: Not Enough or Too Much?," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 22(4), pages 503-519, October.
    10. Nelson, Phillip, 1970. "Information and Consumer Behavior," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 78(2), pages 311-329, March-Apr.
    11. van de Ven, Niels & Zeelenberg, Marcel, 2011. "Regret aversion and the reluctance to exchange lottery tickets," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 194-200, February.
    12. Meta Brown & Christopher J. Flinn & Andrew Schotter, 2011. "Real-Time Search in the Laboratory and the Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(2), pages 948-974, April.
    13. Seale, Darryl A. & Rapoport, Amnon, 1997. "Sequential Decision Making with Relative Ranks: An Experimental Investigation of the "Secretary Problem">," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 69(3), pages 221-236, March.
    14. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
    15. Elena Reutskaja & Rosemarie Nagel & Colin F. Camerer & Antonio Rangel, 2011. "Search Dynamics in Consumer Choice under Time Pressure: An Eye-Tracking Study," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(2), pages 900-926, April.
    16. Herbert A. Simon, 1955. "A Behavioral Model of Rational Choice," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 69(1), pages 99-118.
    17. Weitzman, Martin L, 1979. "Optimal Search for the Best Alternative," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(3), pages 641-654, May.
    18. David E. Bell, 1982. "Regret in Decision Making under Uncertainty," Operations Research, INFORMS, vol. 30(5), pages 961-981, October.
    19. Braunstein, Yale M & Schotter, Andrew, 1982. "Labor Market Search: An Experimental Study," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 20(1), pages 133-144, January.
    20. Darby, Michael R & Karni, Edi, 1973. "Free Competition and the Optimal Amount of Fraud," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 16(1), pages 67-88, April.
    21. Andrew Caplin & Mark Dean & Daniel Martin, 2011. "Search and Satisficing," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(7), pages 2899-2922, December.
    22. Zeelenberg, Marcel & Beattie, Jane, 1997. "Consequences of Regret Aversion 2: Additional Evidence for Effects of Feedback on Decision Making," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 63-78, October.
    23. Cooke, Alan D J & Meyvis, Tom & Schwartz, Alan, 2001. "Avoiding Future Regret in Purchase-Timing Decisions," Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Consumer Research Inc., vol. 27(4), pages 447-459, March.
    24. Sonnemans, Joep, 2000. "Decisions and strategies in a sequential search experiment," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 91-102, February.
    25. Cox, James C & Oaxaca, Ronald L, 1989. "Laboratory Experiments with a Finite-Horizon Job-Search Model," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 2(3), pages 301-329, September.
    26. Schotter, Andrew & Braunstein, Yale M, 1981. "Economic Search: An Experimental Study," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 19(1), pages 1-25, January.
    27. Emel Filiz-Ozbay & Erkut Y. Ozbay, 2007. "Auctions with Anticipated Regret: Theory and Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(4), pages 1407-1418, September.
    28. Ben Casner, 2021. "Learning while shopping: an experimental investigation into the effect of learning on consumer search," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 24(1), pages 238-273, March.
    29. Zeelenberg, M. & Pieters, R., 2004. "Consequences of regret aversion in real life : The case of the Dutch postcode lottery," Other publications TiSEM d16cb90a-f96c-4fce-b4c7-4, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    30. Stahl, Dale O, II, 1989. "Oligopolistic Pricing with Sequential Consumer Search," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(4), pages 700-712, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Klimm, Felix & Kocher, Martin G. & Opitz, Timm & Schudy, Simeon, 2023. "Time pressure and regret in sequential search," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 206(C), pages 406-424.
    2. Horváth, Gergely, 2023. "Peer effects through receiving advice in job search: An experimental study," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 216(C), pages 494-519.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Klimm, Felix & Kocher, Martin G. & Opitz, Timm & Schudy, Simeon, 2023. "Time pressure and regret in sequential search," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 206(C), pages 406-424.
    2. Ben Casner, 2021. "Learning while shopping: an experimental investigation into the effect of learning on consumer search," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 24(1), pages 238-273, March.
    3. Yuta KITTAKA & Ryo MIKAMI, 2020. "Consumer Search and Stock-out: A Laboratory Experiment," ISER Discussion Paper 1104, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
    4. Pantelis P. Analytis & Amit Kothiyal & Konstantinos Katsikopoulos, 2014. "Multi-attribute utility models as cognitive search engines," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 9(5), pages 403-419, September.
    5. Schunk, Daniel & Winter, Joachim, 2009. "The relationship between risk attitudes and heuristics in search tasks: A laboratory experiment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 347-360, August.
    6. repec:cup:judgdm:v:9:y:2014:i:5:p:403-419 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Sugden, Robert & Wang, Mengjie & Zizzo, Daniel John, 2019. "Take it or leave it: Experimental evidence on the effect of time-limited offers on consumer behaviour," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 168(C), pages 1-23.
    8. Imen Bouhlel & Michela Chessa & Agnès Festré & Eric Guerci, 2019. "When to Stop? A Theoretical and Experimental Investigation of an Individual Search Task," GREDEG Working Papers 2019-40, Groupe de REcherche en Droit, Economie, Gestion (GREDEG CNRS), Université Côte d'Azur, France.
    9. Efthymios Lykopoulos & Georgios Voucharas & Dimitrios Xefteris, 2022. "Pandora’s rules in the laboratory," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 25(5), pages 1492-1514, November.
    10. Fu, Jingcheng & Sefton, Martin & Upward, Richard, 2019. "Social comparisons in job search," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 168(C), pages 338-361.
    11. Vincent Mak & Darryl A. Seale & Amnon Rapoport & Eyran J. Gisches, 2019. "Voting Rules in Sequential Search by Committees: Theory and Experiments," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 65(9), pages 4349-4364, September.
    12. Asa B. Palley & Mirko Kremer, 2014. "Sequential Search and Learning from Rank Feedback: Theory and Experimental Evidence," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 60(10), pages 2525-2542, October.
    13. Rami Zwick & Amnon Rapoport & Alison King Chung Lo & A. V. Muthukrishnan, 2003. "Consumer Sequential Search: Not Enough or Too Much?," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 22(4), pages 503-519, October.
    14. Gerald Häubl & Benedict G. C. Dellaert & Bas Donkers, 2010. "Tunnel Vision: Local Behavioral Influences on Consumer Decisions in Product Search," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 29(3), pages 438-455, 05-06.
    15. Marcu, Emanuel & Noussair, Charles, 2018. "Sequential Search with a Price Freeze Option - Theory and Experimental Evidence," Discussion Paper 2018-029, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    16. Dmitry Ryvkin & Danila Serra, 2019. "Is More Competition Always Better? An Experimental Study Of Extortionary Corruption," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 57(1), pages 50-72, January.
    17. Inukai, Keigo & Kawata, Keisuke & Sasaki, Masaru, 2017. "Committee Search with Ex-ante Heterogeneous Agents: Theory and Experimental Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 10760, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    18. Michele Fioretti & Alexander Vostroknutov & Giorgio Coricelli, 2022. "Dynamic Regret Avoidance," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 14(1), pages 70-93, February.
    19. Erik Hoelzl & Luise Hahn & Maria Pollai & Jan Masak, 2013. "The Effect of Feedback on Process and Outcome of Loan Negotiations: Consequences on Risk Aversion and the Willingness to Compromise," Group Decision and Negotiation, Springer, vol. 22(3), pages 541-559, May.
    20. Daniela Cagno & Tibor Neugebauer & Carlos Rodriguez-Palmero & Abdolkarim Sadrieh, 2014. "Recall searching with and without recall," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 77(3), pages 297-311, October.
    21. Miura, Takahiro & Inukai, Keigo & Sasaki, Masaru, 2019. "Testing the Reference-Dependent Model: A Laboratory Search Experiment," IZA Discussion Papers 12378, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Regret; Information feedback; Sequential search;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:189:y:2021:i:c:p:298-319. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    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 CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Catherine Liu (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jebo .

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.