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Intertemporal Choice - Toward an Integrative Framework

Author

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  • Berns, Gregory S.
  • Loewenstein, George
  • Laibson, David I.

Abstract

Intertemporal choices are decisions with consequences that play out over time. These choices range from the prosaic–-how much food to eat at a meal– to life--changing decisions about education, marriage, fertility, health behaviors and savings. Intertemporal preferences also affect policy debates about long-run challenges, such as global warming. Historically, it was assumed that delayed rewards were discounted at a constant rate over time. Recent theoretical and empirical advances from economic, psychological and neuroscience perspectives, however, have revealed a more complex account of how individuals make intertemporal decisions. We review and integrate these advances. We emphasize three different, occasionally competing, mechanisms that are implemented in the brain: representation, anticipation and self-control.

Suggested Citation

  • Berns, Gregory S. & Loewenstein, George & Laibson, David I., 2007. "Intertemporal Choice - Toward an Integrative Framework," Scholarly Articles 4554332, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hrv:faseco:4554332
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    Cited by:

    1. Claudia Toma & Marcel Zeelenberg & Olivier Corneille, 2016. "The affective dynamics of hedonic versus healthy food choices: Making salient post-consumption affect promotes healthy food choices," Working Papers CEB 16-026, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    2. Arthur H. Goldsmith & James F. Casey, 2011. "The Interdisciplinary Approach to Teaching Economics," Chapters,in: International Handbook on Teaching and Learning Economics, chapter 22 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    3. Daniel R. Cavagnaro & Gabriel J. Aranovich & Samuel M. McClure & Mark A. Pitt & Jay I. Myung, 2016. "On the functional form of temporal discounting: An optimized adaptive test," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 52(3), pages 233-254, June.
    4. Elisa Gambetti & Fiorella Giusberti, 2014. "The role of anxiety and anger traits in financial field," Mind & Society: Cognitive Studies in Economics and Social Sciences, Springer;Fondazione Rosselli, vol. 13(2), pages 271-284, November.
    5. Herber, Stefanie P. & Kalinowski, Michael, 2016. "Non-take-up of Student Financial Aid: A Microsimulation for Germany," Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145727, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    6. Lades, Leonhard K., 2012. "Towards an incentive salience model of intertemporal choice," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 833-841.
    7. repec:spr:nathaz:v:90:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s11069-017-3046-5 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Chen, Jing, 2012. "The nature of discounting," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 313-324.
    9. Kim, Younoh & Radoias, Vlad, 2016. "Education, individual time preferences, and asymptomatic disease detection," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 150(C), pages 15-22.
    10. repec:kap:theord:v:84:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s11238-017-9641-9 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. DeSteno, David & Li, Ye & Dickens, Leah & Lerner, Jennifer, 2014. "Gratitude: A Tool for Reducing Economic Impatience," Scholarly Articles 12185844, Harvard Kennedy School of Government.
    12. Faralla, Valeria & Novarese, Marco & Ardizzone, Antonella, 2017. "Framing Effects in Intertemporal Choice: A Nudge Experiment," MPRA Paper 82086, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. repec:spr:svcbiz:v:11:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s11628-016-0327-0 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Stefanie P. Herber & Michael Kalinowski, 2016. "Non-Take-Up of Student Financial Aid: A Microsimulation for Germany," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 844, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    15. Wölbert, E.M. & Riedl, A.M., 2013. "Measuring time and risk preferences: Reliability, stability, domain specificity," Research Memorandum 041, Maastricht University, Graduate School of Business and Economics (GSBE).
    16. Thornton, Jeremy & McCarty, Sara Helms & Stokes, Charles E., 2017. "Divine restraint: An experimental analysis of religious preference and intertemporal discounting," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 99-110.
    17. Herber, Stefanie P. & Kalinowski, Michael, 2016. "Non-take-up of student financial aid: A microsimulation for Germany," BERG Working Paper Series 109, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    18. George Ainslie, 2012. "Pure hyperbolic discount curves predict “eyes open” self-control," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 73(1), pages 3-34, July.
    19. Leonhard K. Lades, 2011. "Towards an Incentive Salience Model of Intertemporal Choice," Papers on Economics and Evolution 2011-18, Philipps University Marburg, Department of Geography.
    20. Finke, Michael S. & Huston, Sandra J., 2013. "Time preference and the importance of saving for retirement," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 23-34.

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