When and why do we want to know? How experienced regret promotes post-decision information search

Yaniv Shani, Marcel Zeelenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations

Abstract

The effect of emotional and situational factors on the decision to seek out post-decision information about un-chosen alternative was examined in five experiments. Experiment 1 tested participants' willingness to find out the outcome of an un-chosen investment that was likely to have a higher value than the chosen investment. It was found that participants were more willing to acquire information when they were responsible for the decision. Experiment 2 showed that responsibility affects information seeking, in particular when one suspects that a wrong decision was made. Experiments 3-5 examined the role of regret on information seeking. It was shown that regret about making the wrong investment (Experiment 3), forgetting to send in a lottery ticket (Experiment 4), and missing an opportunity to use a discount card after spending a month in Australia (Experiment 5), mediates the information-seeking behavior. Experiment 5 also demonstrated that the experience of regret (and not its anticipation) influences post-decision information seeking even when the information is of no future use.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)207-222
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Behavioral Decision Making
Volume20
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2007

Keywords

  • Decision-making
  • Information seeking
  • Regret
  • Uncertainty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Decision Sciences
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Applied Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Strategy and Management

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