Worry and the illusion of safety: Evidence from a real-objects experiment
We analyze the impact of an individual's tendency to worry on willingness to pay (WTP) for a protective measure. We report on the results of a controlled experiment with real objects at stake. Worry was measured with the Worry Domains Questionnaire, an instrument determining an individual's tendency to (non-pathological) worry. Although the loss probability was relatively high and exactly specified, we find that the tendency to worry has in general a positive effect on WTP for protective measures. However when the objects at stake are given to our respondents, high worriers significantly reduce their WTP for protection whereas low worriers are unaffected. We call this tendency of high worriers a safety illusion and relate it to findings on automatic self- regulation, transitional objects in childhood, and studies on the illusion of control. High worriers appear to make more use of all these mechanisms than low worriers because they have more experience in easing their anxiety.
|Date of creation:||2002|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Spandauer Str. 1,10178 Berlin|
Web page: http://www.wiwi.hu-berlin.de/
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- McClelland, Gary H & Schulze, William D & Coursey, Don L, 1993. "Insurance for Low-Probability Hazards: A Bimodal Response to Unlikely Events," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 7(1), pages 95-116, August.
- Richard H. Thaler, 2008.
"Mental Accounting and Consumer Choice,"
INFORMS, vol. 27(1), pages 15-25, 01-02.
- Johnson, Eric J & Hershey, John & Meszaros, Jacqueline & Kunreuther, Howard, 1993. "Framing, Probability Distortions, and Insurance Decisions," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 7(1), pages 35-51, August.
- Hsee, Christopher K & Kunreuther, Howard C, 2000. "The Affection Effect in Insurance Decisions," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 20(2), pages 141-59, March.
- Hogarth, Robin M & Kunreuther, Howard, 1995. "Decision Making under Ignorance: Arguing with Yourself," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 15-36, January.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:zbw:sfb373:200225. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (ZBW - German National Library of Economics)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.