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Framing and stakes: A survey study of decisions under uncertainty

  • Baucells, Manel

    ()

    (IESE Business School)

  • Rata, Cristina

    (IESE Business School)

Using a survey study of 261 decisions under uncertainty, we explore the factors that explain risk taking behavior and those that predict the importance of a decision. We also examine the relationship between framing and status quo, the similarity between monetary and non-monetary decisions, as well as the similarities and differences among our three subject groups (Undergraduates, MBAs and Executives). We find that framing, domain, and probability of success have a strong influence on the probability of taking risks. Other factors, such as group, importance of a decision, and whether the consequences are monetary or not, do not seem to influence risk attitudes. Our analysis of importance of a decision highlights the frequency with which a decision is taken as a key variable. Our results suggest that the cumulative effects of unimportant and frequent decisions are greater than the cumulative effects of very important and infrequent decisions.

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Paper provided by IESE Business School in its series IESE Research Papers with number D/568.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: 21 Sep 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ebg:iesewp:d-0568
Contact details of provider: Postal: IESE Business School, Av Pearson 21, 08034 Barcelona, SPAIN
Web page: http://www.iese.edu/

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  1. Beetsma, Roel & Schotman, Peter C, 1998. "Measuring Risk Attitudes in a Natural Experiment: Data from the Television Game Show LINGO," CEPR Discussion Papers 1893, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Hans Binswanger, 1980. "Attitudes toward risk: Experimental measurement in rural india," Artefactual Field Experiments 00009, The Field Experiments Website.
  3. Camerer, Colin F. & Hogarth, Robin M., 1999. "The Effects of Financial Incentives in Experiments: A Review and Capital-Labor-Production Framework," Working Papers 1059, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  4. Mohammed Abdellaoui, 2000. "Parameter-Free Elicitation of Utility and Probability Weighting Functions," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 46(11), pages 1497-1512, November.
  5. Kuhberger, Anton & Schulte-Mecklenbeck, Michael & Perner, Josef, 2002. "Framing decisions: Hypothetical and real," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 89(2), pages 1162-1175, November.
  6. James G. March & Zur Shapira, 1987. "Managerial Perspectives on Risk and Risk Taking," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 33(11), pages 1404-1418, November.
  7. Fagley, N. S. & Miller, Paul M., 1997. "Framing Effects and Arenas of Choice: Your Money or Your Life?," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 71(3), pages 355-373, September.
  8. Camerer, Colin F., 1998. "Prospect Theory in the Wild: Evidence From the Field," Working Papers 1037, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  9. Paul C. Nutt, 1998. "How Decision Makers Evaluate Alternatives and the Influence of Complexity," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 44(8), pages 1148-1166, August.
  10. Samuelson, William & Zeckhauser, Richard, 1988. " Status Quo Bias in Decision Making," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 7-59, March.
  11. Baucells Alib├ęs Manel & Heukamp Franz H., 2007. "Stochastic Dominance and Cumulative Prospect Theory," Working Papers 201061, Fundacion BBVA / BBVA Foundation.
  12. Paul J. H. Schoemaker, 1990. "Are Risk-Attitudes Related Across Domains and Response Modes?," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 36(12), pages 1451-1463, December.
  13. Rettinger, David A. & Hastie, Reid, 2001. "Content Effects on Decision Making," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 85(2), pages 336-359, July.
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