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Cogn Emot. 2011 Feb;25(2):351-9. doi: 10.1080/02699931.2010.485889.

Behavioural consequences of regret and disappointment in social bargaining games.

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  • 1Department of Social Psychology, Tilburg University, PO Box 90153, NL-5000 LE Tilburg, The Netherlands.


Previous research on the role of negative emotions in social bargaining games has focused primarily on social emotions such as anger and guilt. In this article, we provide a test for behavioural differences between two prototypical decision-related negative emotions-regret and disappointment-in one-shot social dilemma games. Three experiments with two different emotion-induction procedures (autobiographical recall and imagined scenarios) and two different games (the ultimatum game and the 10-coin give-some game) revealed that regret increased prosocial behaviour, whereas disappointment decreased prosocial behaviour. These results extend previous findings concerning differences between regret and disappointment to interdependent (social) situations.

© 2010 Psychology Press, an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group, an Informa business

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