Rational decision making: balancing RUN and JUMP modes of analysis

Mind and Society 11 (1):69-80 (2012)
Rationality in decision making is commonly assessed by comparing choice performance against normative standards. We argue that such a performance-centered approach blurs the distinction between rational choice and adaptive behavior. Instead, rational choice should be assessed with regard to the way individuals make analytic decisions. We suggest that analytic decisions can be made in two different modes in which control processes are directed at different levels. In a RUN mode, thought is directed at controlling the operation of a decision strategy. In the JUMP mode, the individual analyses the interpretation of the decision situation as well as the appropriateness of alternative strategies. We suggest that a decision should be considered “rational” when an individual is able to switch between these modes and balance their interaction.
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DOI 10.1007/s11299-011-0097-2
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