Michel Tuan Pham
Contingent Reliance on the Affect Heuristic as a Function of Regulatory Focus
Coauthor(s): Tamar Avnet.
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Results from four studies show that the reliance on affect as a heuristic of judgment and decision making
is more pronounced under a promotion focus than under a prevention focus. Two different manifestations
of this phenomenon were observed. Studies 1–3 show that different types of affective inputs are
weighted more heavily under promotion than under prevention in person-impression formation, product
evaluations, and social recommendations. Study 4 additionally shows that valuations performed under
promotion are more scope-insensitive—a characteristic of affect-based valuations—than valuations performed
under prevention. The greater reliance on affect as a heuristic under promotion seems to arise
because promotion-focused individuals tend to find affective inputs more diagnostic, not because promotion
increases the reliance on peripheral information per se.
Source: Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes
Pham, Michel Tuan, and Tamar Avnet. "Contingent Reliance on the Affect Heuristic as a Function of Regulatory Focus." Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes 108, no. 2 (2009): 267-278.