Archivio per 14 marzo 2015

14
Mar
15

Evidence for and against a simple interpretation of the less-is-mor effect

See on Scoop.itBounded Rationality and Beyond

Abstract The less-is-more effect predicts that people can be more accurate making paired-comparison decisions when they have less knowledge, in the sense that they do not recognize all of the items in the decision domain. The traditional theoretical explanation is that decisions based on recognizing one alternative but not the other can be more accurate than decisions based on partial knowledge of both alternatives. I present new data that directly test for the less-is-more effect, coming from a task in which participants judge which of two cities is larger and indicate whether they recognize each city. A group-level analysis of these data provides evidence in favor of the less-is-more effect: there is strong evidence people make decisions consistent with recognition, and that these decisions are more accurate than those based on knowledge. An individual-level analysis of the same data, however, provides evidence inconsistent with a simple interpretation of the less-is-more effect: there is no evidence for an inverse-U-shaped relationship between accuracy and recognition, and especially no evidence that individuals who recognize a moderate number of cities outperform individuals who recognize many cities. I suggest a reconciliation of these contrasting findings, based on the systematic change of the accuracy of recognition-based decisions with the underlying recognition rate. In particular, the data show that people who recognize almost none or almost all cities make more accurate decisions by applying the recognition heuristic, when compared to the accuracy achieved by people with intermediate recognition rates. The implications of these findings for precisely defining and understanding the less-is-more effect are discussed, as are the constraints our data potentially place on models of the learning and decision-making processes involved

See on journal.sjdm.org

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14
Mar
15

The cognitive basis of social behavior: cognitive reflection overrides antisocial but not always prosocial motives

See on Scoop.itBounded Rationality and Beyond
Abstract: Even though human social behavior has received considerable scientific attention in the last decades, its cognitive underpinnings are still poorly understood. Applying a dual-process framework to the study of social preferences, we show in two studies that individuals with a more reflective/deliberative cognitive style, as measured by scores on the Cognitive Reflection Test (CRT), are more likely to make choices consistent with “mild” altruism in simple non-strategic decisions. Such choices increase social welfare by increasing the other person’s payoff at very low or no cost for the individual. The choices of less reflective individuals (i.e. those who rely more heavily on intuition), on the other hand, are more likely to be associated with either egalitarian or spiteful motives. We also identify a negative link between reflection and choices characterized by “strong” altruism, but this result holds only in Study 2. Moreover, we provide evidence that the relationship between social preferences and CRT scores is not driven by general intelligence. We discuss how our results can reconcile some previous conflicting findings on the cognitive basis of social behavior.
See on chapman.edu

14
Mar
15

The effect of perceived regional accents on individual economic behavior: A lab experiment on linguistic performance, cognitive ratings and economic decisions

See on Scoop.itBounded Rationality and Beyond
Abstract: Does it matter if you speak with a regional accent? Speaking immediately reveals something of one’s own social and cultural identity, be it consciously or unconsciously. Perceiving accents involves not only reconstructing such imprints but also augmenting them with particular attitudes and stereotypes. Even though we know much about attitudes and stereotypes that are transmitted by, e.g. skin color, names or physical attractiveness, we do not yet have satisfactory answers how accent perception affects human behavior. How do people act in economically relevant contexts when they are confronted with regional accents? This paper reports a laboratory experiment where we address this question. Participants in our experiment conduct cognitive tests where they can choose to either cooperate or compete with a randomly matched male opponent identified only via his rendering of a standardized text in either a regional accent or standard accent. We find a strong connection between the linguistic performance and the cognitive rating of the opponent. When matched with an opponent who speaks the accent of the participant’s home region – the in-group opponent – individuals tend to cooperate significantly more often. By contrast, they are more likely to compete when matched with an accent speaker from outside their home region, the out-group opponent. Our findings demonstrate, firstly, that the perception of an out-group accent leads not only to social discrimination but also influences economic decisions. Secondly, they suggest that this economic behavior is not necessarily attributable to the perception of a regional accent per se, but rather to the social rating of linguistic distance and the in-group/out-group perception it evokes.
See on econstor.eu

14
Mar
15

Why Brain Science and Beer Go Hand-In-Hand

See on Scoop.itBounded Rationality and Beyond

Beer and neuroscience – an unlikely combination, you might think, for anything other than a collegiate shooting the breeze over drinks. But in my field of study – olfaction – they can be tightly intertwined.

I work to uncover the neural mechanisms of how we learn about a new odor. The parallels between olfactory research and beer start with some basics: They have overlapping chemistry terminology (“esters”, “volatile compounds”), and the craft of brewing beer camouflages as one application of the scientific method, with plenty of trial-and-error and hypothesis testing.

No, it’s not your imagination. Beer isn’t something that smells good to most people at first. In fact, just a few years ago, I actually disliked beer. But since then, I’ve slowly amassed a mental library of styles and flavors that I’ve encountered, those I like, and those I’ll pass on next time. These learning experiences are not unlike the ones of brewers or chefs or perfumists. Important to my work, we know that even things that once smelled or tasted repulsive can come to be pleasurable. So how do we form new odor representations, and how are they affected by learning and experience?

See on huffingtonpost.com

14
Mar
15

Modeling infectious disease dynamics in the complex landscape of global health

See on Scoop.itPapers

Despite some notable successes in the control of infectious diseases, transmissible pathogens still pose an enormous threat to human and animal health. The ecological and evolutionary dynamics of infections play out on a wide range of interconnected temporal, organizational, and spatial scales, which span hours to months, cells to ecosystems, and local to global spread. Moreover, some pathogens are directly transmitted between individuals of a single species, whereas others circulate among multiple hosts, need arthropod vectors, or can survive in environmental reservoirs. Many factors, including increasing antimicrobial resistance, increased human connectivity and changeable human behavior, elevate prevention and control from matters of national policy to international challenge. In the face of this complexity, mathematical models offer valuable tools for synthesizing information to understand epidemiological patterns, and for developing quantitative evidence for decision-making in global health.

Modeling infectious disease dynamics in the complex landscape of global health
Hans Heesterbeek, et al.

Science 13 March 2015:
Vol. 347 no. 6227
http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.aaa4339 ;

See on sciencemag.org

14
Mar
15

The Molecular Clock of Neutral Evolution Can Be Accelerated or Slowed by Asymmetric Spatial Structure

See on Scoop.itPapers

Evolution is driven by genetic mutations. While some mutations affect an organism’s ability to survive and reproduce, most are neutral and have no effect. Neutral mutations play an important role in the study of evolution because they generally accrue at a consistent rate over time. This result, first discovered 50 years ago, allows neutral mutations to be used as a “molecular clock” to estimate, for example, how long ago humans diverged from chimpanzees and bonobos. We used mathematical modeling to study how the rates of these molecular clocks are affected by the spatial arrangement of a population in its habitat. We find that asymmetry in this spatial structure can either slow down or speed up the rate at which neutral mutations accrue. This effect could potentially skew our estimates of past events from genetic data. It also has implications for a number of other fields. For example, we show that the architecture of intestinal tissue can limit the rate of genetic substitutions leading to cancer. We also show that the structure of social networks affects the rate at which new ideas replace old ones. Surprisingly, we find that most Twitter networks slow down the rate of idea replacement.

Allen B, Sample C, Dementieva Y, Medeiros RC, Paoletti C, Nowak MA. (2015) The Molecular Clock of Neutral Evolution Can Be Accelerated or Slowed by Asymmetric Spatial Structure. PLoS Comput Biol 11(2): e1004108. http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pcbi.1004108 ;

See on journals.plos.org

14
Mar
15

Pain In The Brain Switches From Sensory To Emotional Processes Over Time – Medical Daily

See on Scoop.itBehaviourWorks threads

Over time our perception of pain moves through different areas of the brain the more we’re exposed to it.

See on medicaldaily.com




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