Studiegids

nl en

The Psychology of Economic Behaviour

Vak 2013-2014

Admission requirements

Master’s students MSc Psychology

Description

Economic behaviour is essentially social behaviour. Behaviours like gambling, saving, bargaining, consumption all refer to social contexts. As a consequence, social psychology has much to offer to economics. In this course we will focus on what social psychology can contribute to the understanding of such economic behaviours.

We will seek answers to questions like:

  • “How does personality come into play?”
  • “How rational is economic behaviour?”
  • “What about emotions?”
  • “Are we only motivated by self-interest?”
  • “How do we deal with uncertainty?”

In the search for answers we will concentrate on how the assumptions of economic theory compare to the most recent insights in social psychology. For this purpose we will read and discuss up-to-date articles in economic and psychological journal articles and book chapters as well as classic studies that had a major impact on the development of psychological and economic theory. Students will prepare the meetings by reading the literature, and actively participate in the discussions. The course will end with a final exam.

Course objectives

The student:

  • Has specialized knowledge of social psychological theories about behaviour and decision-making in social contexts and organisations.
  • Has thorough knowledge of subjects (within and beyond the specialization) that may be of importance for the use of these theories (i.e., social psychology, behavioural economics).
  • Can at basic level make use of theories that are common in social psychology.

Timetable

The Psychology of Economic Behaviour (2013-2014):

Mode of instruction

Seven seminars/lectures of 2 hours each and final 2-hour exam.

Assessment method

Written final exam.

From January 1, 2006 the Faculty of Social Sciences has instituted the Ephorus system to be used by instructors for the systematic detection of plagiarism in students’ written work. Please see the information concerning fraud .

Blackboard

Information on blackboard.leidenuniv.nl

Blackboard will be used to make studymaterial, powerpoint lectures and additional material available.

Reading list

Readings available via ‘Blackboard’. Exemplary literature includes:

  • Iyengar, S, & Lepper, M. (2000). When choice is demotivating: Can one desire too much of a good thing? Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 79(6), 995-1006.
  • Soman, D, & Gourville, J. (2001). Transaction decoupling: How price bundling affects the decision to consume. Journal of Marketing Research, 38(1), 30-44.
  • Bastardi, A, & Shafir, E. (1998). On the pursuit and misuse of useless information. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 75(1), 19-32.
  • Gilbert, D, Morewedge, C, Risen, J, et al. (2004). Looking forward to looking backward – The misprediction of regret. Psychological science, 15(5), 346-350.
  • Miller, D. (1999). The norm of self-interest. American Psychologist, 54(12), 1053-1060.
  • Shaffer, V, & Arkes, H. (2009). Preference reversals in evaluations of cash versus non-cash incentives. Journal of Economic Psychology, 30(6), 859-872.

Registration

Course enrolment

Students need to enrol for the course via uSis on the master’s introduction and course enrolment day that takes place at the start of each semester. Please, consult the master’s agenda Psychology.

Exam registration

Students must register for each examination. Students, who haven’t registered, cannot participate in an exam

Contact information

Prof.dr. E. van Dijk
E-mail: dijk@fsw.leidenuniv.nl