טכניון מכון טכנולוגי לישראל
הטכניון מכון טכנולוגי לישראל - בית הספר ללימודי מוסמכים  
M.Sc Thesis
M.Sc StudentDalia Gilad
SubjectPriming Effect and Subconscious Influences on Economic
Decision Making
DepartmentDepartment of Industrial Engineering and Management
Supervisor Full Professor Kliger Doron


Abstract

This study aimed to explore the possible influences of priming effect on economic decision.  Priming is an unconscious remembering process, which occurs when a certain stimulus or event increases the availability of a specific informative category in memory or conscious, that may affect the information processing, and as a result affects decision making.  In order to do so we designed and conducted 3 experiments that involved economic decision making.  The first experiment was a pilot experiment in which subjects (undergraduates) were randomly assigned into on out of two groups; Risk Seeking (RS) or Risk Aversion (RA). Subjects had red a story and later were requested to answer some economic questions which involved few investment options. The only different between the two groups was the story they red. RS group red a story about a person described as an adventurer, who took a risk in uncertain conditions and consequently gain. The RA group was given a story about a person described as responsible and reliable, who avoided taking a risk and consequently saved from loss.  Results supported the hypotheses and indicated that the RS subjects did tolerate more risk than RA subjects. At the second experiment subjects (undergraduates) were randomly assigned into RS or RA conditions.  Subjects were given a booklet with information on traded fund which included economic data as well as ads. Subjects review the booklet and then were requested to answer some investment questions relating to the aforementioned fund.  In order to stimulate realistic conditions subjects were paid according to the fund’s real performances.  The only different between the two groups was that at the booklet which was given to RS subjects the ads were attached with verbal inserts advocating risk seeking behavior, while at the RA subjects ads were attached with a neutral subscript. Again, results supported the hypotheses, indicated that the RS subjects did tolerate more risk than RA subjects. Experiment 3 was designed in order to explore the possible influence of priming effect on professional investors. Subjects (investment advisors and accountants) were randomly assigned into RS or RA conditions. Subjects were requested to read a story .Then subjects of both groups received information on a traded stock and had to answer some investment questions relating to the aforementioned stock. Again results supported the hypotheses.