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On apparent irrational behaviors : interacting structures and the mind

Author

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  • Gosselin, Pierre
  • Lotz, Aileen
  • Wambst, Marc

Abstract

We develop a general method to solve models of interactions between multiple agents, including the possibility of strategic advantage for some of them. We argue that this type of model applies to the description of apparently irrational or biased behaviors in a person whose action is the resultant of several rational structures with di�erent goals. Our main example is a three agents model, denoted "conscious", "unconscious", and "body". Our principal result is that, for an agent whose "unconscious" goals differ from the conscious ones, the unconscious may in uence the conscious either directly, or indirectly via a third agent, the body and its needs. This three agent model allows the description of behaviors such as craving, excessive smoking, or sleepiness, to delay or dismiss a task. One of the main result stands in the fact that the unconscious agent's strategic action depends crucially on whether the conscious' actions ("task" and "feeding") are complementary in time. When they are complementary, and if the conscious is not sensitive to unconscious' messages, the unconscious may drive the conscious towards its goals by blurring physical needs. When they are not complementary, the unconscious may more easily reach his goal by influencing the conscious, be it directly or indirectly.

Suggested Citation

  • Gosselin, Pierre & Lotz, Aileen & Wambst, Marc, 2013. "On apparent irrational behaviors : interacting structures and the mind," MPRA Paper 44421, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:44421
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    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/44528/8/MPRA_paper_44528.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. David K. Levine & Drew Fudenberg, 2006. "A Dual-Self Model of Impulse Control," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(5), pages 1449-1476, December.
    2. Akerlof, George A, 1991. "Procrastination and Obedience," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(2), pages 1-19, May.
    3. Lotz, Aïleen, 2011. "An Economic Approach to the Self : the Dual Agent," MPRA Paper 30043, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Don Ross, 2007. "Economic Theory and Cognitive Science: Microexplanation," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262681684, March.
    5. Lotz, Aileen & Gosselin, Pierre, 2012. "A dynamic model of interactions between conscious and unconscious," MPRA Paper 36697, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Schelling, Thomas C, 1978. "Egonomics, or the Art of Self-Management," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 68(2), pages 290-294, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Pierre Gosselin & Aïleen Lotz & Marc Wambst, 2015. "From Rationality to Irrationality : Dynamic Interacting Structures," Working Papers hal-01122078, HAL.
    2. Pierre Gosselin & Aïleen Lotz & Marc Wambst, 2017. "A Path Integral Approach to Interacting Economic Systems with Multiple Heterogeneous Agents," Working Papers hal-01549586, HAL.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    dual agent; conscious and unconscious; rationality; multi-rationality; consistency; choices and preferences; multi-agent model.;

    JEL classification:

    • C02 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - General - - - Mathematical Economics
    • C65 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Miscellaneous Mathematical Tools
    • C70 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - General
    • D01 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Microeconomic Behavior: Underlying Principles
    • D87 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Neuroeconomics

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