Investigating the Influence of a Time-based Incentive on Choice Blindness Detection Rates

Moritz Krusche, Carina Kraft, Anahita Shafiei Sabet, Rosalie Mourmans, Lea Bentz, Katharina Gillessen, Ann-Katrin Gräber


Choice blindness is the striking failure to notice mismatches between intention and outcome in decision-making. This counterintuitive phenomenon has proven itself robust against a range of external influences and, despite numerous investigations, the underlying mechanism remains unknown. In the present study, we hypothesized that the occurrence of choice blindness would decrease if detection is facilitated through the provision of a time-based motivational incentive (i.e., “leaving early”). Participants (N=72) were randomly allocated to incentive or no-incentive conditions. All participants performed a computer-based general knowledge quiz with binary answer options, in which their answers were reversed for four questions. Detection rates were generally high and varied greatly between questions (range: 23-67%, M=44.7% concurrently; range: 32-88%, M=64.0% retrospectively). However, contrary to our expectations, the motivational incentive appeared not to affect detection rates. Possible interpretations, implications and limitations of our findings are discussed, including the possibility that high intrinsic motivation of our sample population overshadowed the incentive.


Choice Blindness; Decision-Making; Incentives

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