Description of the Former Research Group “Economic Cognition”

The group‘s work focused on the underlying cognitive and motivational aspects involved in decisions in an economic context. Our research aimed at investigating information search and integration in a wide range of situations involving interdependent and strategic decision-making. To this end, we brought together insights from psychology and economics. Methodologically, we integrated tools and research paradigms from both fields to advance and integrate the respective theories.
In order to capture the underlying mechanisms, we employed process measures (i.e., eye-tracking, skin conductance) which provide rich information about where, when, and in what order people attend to information, in real time. These process measures continually make information intake transparent, thus capturing the dynamics of complex processes such as decision-making. Using process-tracing methods, our projects broadened our understanding of the interplay of individual and situational factors affecting decision behavior. We focused on two major challenges: (1) understanding the underlying cognitive and affective processes leading to a choice; and (2) identifying the channels through which situational as well as personality factors operate.

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