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Reasonable bounds on rationality

Igor Grossmann () and Richard P. Eibach ()
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Igor Grossmann: University of Waterloo
Richard P. Eibach: University of Waterloo

Mind & Society: Cognitive Studies in Economics and Social Sciences, 2021, vol. 20, issue 1, No 5, 59-67

Abstract: Abstract Previous theory and research on bounded rationality has emphasized how limited cognitive resources constrain people from making utility maximizing choices. This paper expands the concept of bounded rationality to consider how people’s rationality may be constrained by their internalization of a qualitatively distinct standard for sound judgment, which is commonly labeled reasonableness. In contrast to rationality, the standard of reasonableness provides guidance for making choices in situations that involve balancing incommensurable values and interests or reconciling conflicting points-of-view. We review recent evidence showing that laypeople readily recognize the distinctions between rationality and reasonableness and thus are able to utilize these as distinct standards to inform their everyday decision-making. The fact that people appear to have internalized rationality and reasonableness as distinct standards of sound judgment supports the notion that people’s pursuit of rationality may be bounded by their determination to also be reasonable.

Keywords: Reasonableness; Folk theories; Sound judgment; Wisdom; Lay beliefs; Culture (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1007/s11299-020-00267-9

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