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Willpower and Personal Rules

  • Roland Benabou and Jean Tirole

Much of the literature on time inconsistency has studied the external commitment devices that individuals use to address their self-control problems: tying oneself to the mast, staying away from temptation, holding illiquid assets, or "asking controls" from others. This paper, by contrast, focuses on internal commitment mechanisms or personal rules (diets, exercices regiments, resolutions, moral or religious precepts, etc.) through which people attempt, to achieve self discipline.

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Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Political Economy.

Volume (Year): 112 (2004)
Issue (Month): 4 (August)
Pages: 848-886

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jpolec:v:112:y:2004:i:4:p:848-886
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JPE/

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  1. Ernst Fehr & Klaus Schmidt, 2000. "Theories of Fairness and Reciprocity – Evidence and Economic Applications," CESifo Working Paper Series 403, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Gary S.Grossman Becker & Michael Murphy & Kevin M., 1991. "Rational Addiction and the Effect of Price on Consumption," University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State 68, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State.
  3. Ted O'Donoghue and Matthew Rabin ., 1997. "Doing It Now or Later," Economics Working Papers 97-253, University of California at Berkeley.
  4. Laibson, David I., 1997. "Golden Eggs and Hyperbolic Discounting," Scholarly Articles 4481499, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  5. Schelling, Thomas C, 1978. "Egonomics, or the Art of Self-Management," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 68(2), pages 290-94, May.
  6. Thaler, Richard H & Shefrin, H M, 1981. "An Economic Theory of Self-Control," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(2), pages 392-406, April.
  7. Matthew Rabin., 1995. "Moral Preferences, Moral Constraints, and Self-Serving Biases," Economics Working Papers 95-241, University of California at Berkeley.
  8. Loewenstein, George, 1996. "Out of Control: Visceral Influences on Behavior," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 65(3), pages 272-292, March.
  9. Battaglini, Marco & Bénabou, Roland & Tirole, Jean, 2003. "Self-Control in Peer Groups," IDEI Working Papers 189, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  10. Carrillo, Juan D & Mariotti, Thomas, 2000. "Strategic Ignorance as a Self-Disciplining Device," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(3), pages 529-44, July.
  11. Klaus Wertenbroch, 1998. "Consumption Self-Control by Rationing Purchase Quantities of Virtue and Vice," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 17(4), pages 317-337.
  12. Schelling, Thomas C, 1984. "Self-Command in Practice, in Policy, and in a Theory of Rational Choice," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(2), pages 1-11, May.
  13. Richard Thaler, 1985. "Mental Accounting and Consumer Choice," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 4(3), pages 199-214.
  14. R. Benabou & J. Tirole, 1999. "Self-Confidence and Social Interactions," Princeton Economic Theory Papers 00s2, Economics Department, Princeton University.
  15. Fehr, Ernst & Schmidt, Klaus M., 2001. "Theories of Fairness and Reciprocity," Discussion Papers in Economics 14, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  16. Fudenberg, Drew & Kreps, David M, 1987. "Reputation in the Simultaneous Play of Multiple Opponents," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(4), pages 541-68, October.
  17. Athanasios Orphanides & David Zervos, 1992. "Rational addiction with learning and regret," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 216, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  18. B. Douglas Bernheim & Michael D. Whinston, 1990. "Multimarket Contact and Collusive Behavior," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 21(1), pages 1-26, Spring.
  19. Gary S. Becker & Kevin M. Murphy, 1986. "A Theory of Rational Addiction," University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State 41, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State.
  20. Ignacio Palacios-Huerta, 2001. "Time Inconsistent Preferences in Adam Smith and David Hume," Working Papers 2001-19, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  21. Roland Bénabou & Jean Tirole, 2002. "Self-Confidence And Personal Motivation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(3), pages 871-915, August.
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