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Scitovsky, behavioural economics, and beyond

Listed author(s):
  • Pugno, Maurizio

Scitovsky is known as a forerunner of behavioural economics simply because he drew heavily on psychology and claimed that people's choices may be "joyless" (Scitovsky, The joyless economy, 1976). However, a careful reformulation of his analysis shows that he anticipated a number of insights (also with respect to Kahneman's "two-systems of thought" which suggest new lines of inquiry from an original and different perspective. These insights of Scitovsky regard the following aspects: Uncertainty as a condition where the outcomes of choosing a particular option (novelty) is partially unknown; the case of individual "consumption skill" (inclusive of emotions) that finds this uncertainty desirable when it is challenging; the case of increasing such skill so as to change preferences and make choices more efficient; the case of failing to increase such skill so as to make addictive harmful products an alternative and more tempting option.

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File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.5018/economics-ejournal.ja.2014-24
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File URL: https://www.econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/99999/1/789520362.pdf
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Article provided by Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW) in its journal Economics: The Open-Access, Open-Assessment E-Journal.

Volume (Year): 8 (2014)
Issue (Month): ()
Pages: 1-29

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Handle: RePEc:zbw:ifweej:201424
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  2. Drew Fudenberg, 2006. "Advancing Beyond Advances in Behavioral Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 44(3), pages 694-711, September.
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  13. Pope, Robin & Leitner, Johannes & Leopold-Wildburger, Ulrike, 2009. "Expected utility versus the changes in knowledge ahead," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 199(3), pages 892-901, December.
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  18. Camerer, Colin & Weber, Martin, 1992. "Recent Developments in Modeling Preferences: Uncertainty and Ambiguity," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 5(4), pages 325-370, October.
  19. William M. P. Klein & Jennifer L. Cerully & Matthew M. Monin & Don A. Moore, 2010. "Ability, chance, and ambiguity aversion: Revisiting the competence hypothesis," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 5(3), pages 192-199, June.
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