Departmental Papers (Psychology)

Document Type

Journal Article

Date of this Version

7-19-2012

Publication Source

Frontiers in Neuroscience

Volume

6

Issue

109

DOI

10.3389/fnins.2012.00109

Abstract

Recent work has shown that visual fixations reflect and influence trial-to-trial variability in people’s preferences between goods. Here we extend this principle to attribute weights during decision making under risk. We measured eye movements while people chose between two risky gambles or bid on a single gamble. Consistent with previous work, we found that people exhibited systematic preference reversals between choices and bids. For two gambles matched in expected value, people systematically chose the higher probability option but provided a higher bid for the option that offered the greater amount to win. This effect was accompanied by a shift in fixations of the two attributes, with people fixating on probabilities more during choices and on amounts more during bids. Our results suggest that the construction of value during decision making under risk depends on task context partly because the task differentially directs attention at probabilities vs. amounts. Since recent work demonstrates that neural correlates of value vary with visual fixations, our results also suggest testable hypotheses regarding how task context modulates the neural computation of value to generate preference reversals.

Copyright/Permission Statement

Made available under a CC-BY license according to Frontiers' policy.

Keywords

anchoring, context effects, contingent weighting, eye-tracking, neuroeconomics, risk aversion, visual attention

Included in

Psychology Commons

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Date Posted: 06 December 2017

This document has been peer reviewed.