Document Type

Thesis or dissertation

Date of this Version



Iwan Barankay


Cumulative prospect theory predicts that losses motivate behavior more than equal gains. However, due to the complexity of health preventive behaviors, research still remain inconclusive about the most effective frame type. In this study, researchers aimed to examine the impact of gain- and loss-framed video to incentivize intent to exercise in adults over the age of 40. The authors randomly assigned participants (N=259) to either a gain-framed (N=129) or loss-framed condition (N=130), in which they received factually equivalent video emphasizing the benefits of exercise or the costs of not exercising. A manipulation check and attention check were also administered. T-tests and difference-in-difference were used for statistical analysis. The researchers revealed that there was no statistically significant difference in intent to exercise between the gain-framed and loss-framed conditions. Furthermore, no statistically significant interaction was found between gender and message framing. These results may be due to the low intensity of the intervention, the short time frame or individual differences in self-efficacy. Nevertheless, a larger scale and long-term study addressing population characterization based on gender, self-efficacy and baseline intention is required to translate results to policy recommendations.


Framing, gain, loss, exercise, intent



Date Posted: 15 June 2021


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