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Status quo bias

In: Handbook of Behavioral Industrial Organization


  • Don E. Waldman


Status quo bias has become an increasingly important explanation for economic behavior in a number of fields within economics. Industrial organization is one of the fields where status quo bias can provide a significant amount of insight into the behavior of consumers and firms. In this chapter we show that rational individuals often forgo making economically rational decisions because they are biased in their decision making ability by the existence of a status quo bias. We also show how status quo bias can help us understand, among other things: the financial crisis, firms’ use of satisficing behavior, a reduction in the rate of technological advance, a less efficient market for corporate control, and increased network effects. As a result, industrial organization economists should consider incorporating a status quo bias into more of their theoretical and empirical work.

Suggested Citation

  • Don E. Waldman, 2018. "Status quo bias," Chapters, in: Victor J. Tremblay & Elizabeth Schroeder & Carol Horton Tremblay (ed.), Handbook of Behavioral Industrial Organization, chapter 7, pages 172-193, Edward Elgar Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:elg:eechap:16609_7

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