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Goal bracketing and self-control

Alice Hsiaw ()

Games and Economic Behavior, 2018, vol. 111, issue C, 100-121

Abstract: This paper studies the role of goal bracketing to attenuate time inconsistency. When setting non-binding goals for a multi-stage project, an agent must decide how to group, or bracket, such goals for evaluation. He can bracket broadly by setting an aggregate goal for the entire project, or narrowly by setting incremental goals for individual stages. A loss averse agent brackets optimally by trading off motivation and risk pooling, which interacts non-trivially with time discounting. An aggregate goal becomes more attractive as early-stage uncertainty increases, while incremental goals become more attractive when later-stage uncertainty increases.

Keywords: Choice bracketing; Goals; Reference dependence; Self-control; Quasi-hyperbolic discounting; Optimal stopping (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D81 D91 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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Working Paper: Goal Bracketing and Self-Control (2015) Downloads
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