Abstract: Empirically-grounded psychological theories about how energy-related decisions are made do not connect with global models that explore long-term low-carbon futures and implicitly assume rational expectations and rational choice. Research on human judgment and choice that goes beyond the limited number of goals and processes utilized by homo economicus goes back to the 1950s. Non-rational decision processes were only recently introduced to the IPCC process (Kunreuther et al., 2014) but are rapidly diffusing in that community together with awareness of the existence and importance of social and collective processes. I will provide a historical overview of behavioral decision theory and report on a collaborative effort with colleagues at the Stockholm Resilience Centre to develop an integrative theoretical framework and agent-based instantiations for a set of useful models. This initiative models the decision processes of individual agents and social network dynamics that may lead to tipping points in behavior, i.e., the rapid change needed in many domains of energy and climate-change related behavior (Nyborg et al., 2016).
Collins Conference Room
Elke U. Weber (Princeton University)
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