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Framing under risk : Endogenizing the Reference Point and Separating Cognition and Decision

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We aim at improving the classical explanation of the framing effect phenomenon, based on Prospect Theory by, first, making the reference point shifting that generates the phenomenon endogenous, and second, providing a theory of risky choice framing that accounts for the fundamental intuition that framing effects do not come from cognitive limitations of the subjects. We introduce a normative equivalence relation on the set of lottery prizes that models different descriptions and axiomatizing a preference functional of the Expected Lottery-Dependent Utility type. We first show that the framing effect relates to the indeterminacy of preferences over the space of prizes, modelled by a set of von Neumann-Morgenstern utility functions interpreted as states of mind or reference points. Second, we show that it is possible to identify the precise effect of the reference point shifting by disentangling the perception of the prizes of a lottery from the reaction to its description. The framing phenomenon is thus explained by an endogenous reference point shifting that stems from the feelings that arise in the spirit of the decision maker as a consequence of a variation in the description, in line with psychological explanations of other kinds of framing.

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  • Raphaël Giraud, 2004. "Framing under risk : Endogenizing the Reference Point and Separating Cognition and Decision," Cahiers de la Maison des Sciences Economiques bla04090, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1).
  • Handle: RePEc:mse:wpsorb:bla04090
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    1. Wang, X. T., 1996. "Framing Effects: Dynamics and Task Domains," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 145-157, November.
    2. Machina, Mark J, 1982. ""Expected Utility" Analysis without the Independence Axiom," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(2), pages 277-323, March.
    3. Kuhberger, Anton, 1998. "The Influence of Framing on Risky Decisions: A Meta-analysis," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 23-55, July.
    4. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-291, March.
    5. Dubra, Juan & Maccheroni, Fabio & Ok, Efe A., 2004. "Expected utility theory without the completeness axiom," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 115(1), pages 118-133, March.
    6. Ulrich Schmidt, 2001. "Lottery Dependent Utility: a Reexamination," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 50(1), pages 35-58, February.
    7. Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1992. "Advances in Prospect Theory: Cumulative Representation of Uncertainty," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 5(4), pages 297-323, October.
    8. Chateauneuf, Alain & Wakker, Peter, 1999. "An Axiomatization of Cumulative Prospect Theory for Decision under Risk," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 18(2), pages 137-145, August.
    9. Levin, Irwin P. & Johnson, Richard D. & Russo, Craig P. & Deldin, Patricia J., 1985. "Framing effects in judgment tasks with varying amounts of information," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 362-377, December.
    10. Quiggin, John, 1982. "A theory of anticipated utility," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 323-343, December.
    11. Ghirardato, Paolo & Maccheroni, Fabio & Marinacci, Massimo, 2004. "Differentiating ambiguity and ambiguity attitude," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 118(2), pages 133-173, October.
    12. Wakker, Peter & Tversky, Amos, 1993. "An Axiomatization of Cumulative Prospect Theory," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 7(2), pages 147-175, October.
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    Cited by:

    1. Sacha Bourgeois-Gironde & Raphaël Giraud, 2005. "Accounting for Framing-Effects - an informational approach to intensionality in the Bolker-Jeffrey decision model," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) ijn_00000656, HAL.
    2. Sacha Bourgeois-Gironde & Raphaël Giraud, 2009. "Framing effects as violations of extensionality," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 67(4), pages 385-404, October.
    3. Sacha Bourgeois-Gironde & Raphaël Giraud, 2005. "Accounting for Framing-Effects - an informational approach to intensionality in the Bolker-Jeffrey decision model," Working Papers ijn_00000656, HAL.
    4. Dorian Jullien, 2013. "Asian Disease-type of Framing of Outcomes as an Historical Curiosity," GREDEG Working Papers 2013-47, Groupe de REcherche en Droit, Economie, Gestion (GREDEG CNRS), University of Nice Sophia Antipolis.

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    Keywords

    Framing effects; descriptions; states of mind; reference point shifting; lottery-dependent expected utility; partial orders.;

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • D00 - Microeconomics - - General - - - General
    • A12 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Other Disciplines

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