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J Pers Soc Psychol. 2003 Jun;84(6):1140-53.

Transfer of value from fit.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, Columbia University, New York, New York 10027, USA.


People experience regulatory fit when they pursue a goal in a manner that sustains their regulatory orientation (E. T. Higgins, 2000). Five studies tested whether the value experienced from regulatory fit can transfer to a subsequent evaluation of an object. In Studies 1 and 2, participants gave the same coffee mug a higher price if they had chosen it with a strategy that fit their orientation (eager strategy/promotion; vigilant strategy/prevention) than a strategy that did not fit. Studies 3-5 investigated possible mechanisms underlying this effect. Value transfer was independent of positive mood, perceived effectiveness (instrumentality), and perceived efficiency (ease), and occurred for an object that w as independent of the fit process itself. The findings supported a value confusion account of transfer.

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