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Psychon Bull Rev. 1999 Dec;6(4):533-46.

Broadening behavioral decision research: multiple levels of cognitive processing.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, Northwestern University, Evanston, Il. 60208-2710, USA.


The area of behavioral decision research--specifically, the work on heuristics and biases--has had a tremendous influence on basic research, applied research, and application over the last 25 years. Its unique juxtaposition against economics has provided important benefits, but at the cost of leaving it disconnected from too much of psychology. This paper explores an expanded definition of behavioral decision research through the consideration of multiple levels of cognitive processing. Rather than being limited to how decision makers depart from optimality, we offer a broader analysis of how decision makers define the decision problem and link decisions to goals, as well as a more detailed focus on processes associated with implementing decisions.

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